The Jackson Generals lost in the Championship to the Diamondbacks AA affiliate in 4 games. The team went 78-60 (with the exact same pythag) and had a one year park factor of 100 (meaning the park played neither as a hitter friendly or pitcher friendly park compared to the rest of the league).
Carter Capps was amazing in his time with Jackson and the Mariners were impressed enough that he was brought up to the big leagues. He struck out 35.5% of the batters he faced and walked just 5.9% of them. He also had one dominating outing in Tacoma where he struck out 3 of the 4 batters he faced. In 8 big league outings so far, he has been okay, with a 3.20 FIP and 4.52 SIERA.
Jose Jimenez had an interesting year that he split almost exactly between High Desert and Jackson (with one outing in Tacoma). He was much better in Jackson, which isn’t that surprising considering the Mariners’ system, but would be odd for most organizations. He racked up high strikeout totals along with a really nice ground-ball rate. He walks a few too many hitters, but not so many that you can’t live with it.
Yoervis Medina had a nice year, with a 3.52 FIP and 3.60 SIERA. He struck out a lot of batters and had a solid ground-ball rate, but walked too many batters (which is pretty normal considering his career path). Opponents hit .245/.347/.389 off of him, which is a high OBP, but not a high average or slugging. Imagine what his season would have looked like if he had thrown strikes more consistently. After coming over in the Brandon League trade, Logan Bawcom threw 14.1 very mediocre innings. He walked as many batters as he struck out, which is never good. However, on the whole season, he was very solid with a 2.99 FIP and 3.52 SIERA. He walked a lot of batters, but he also got a ton of strikeouts, and opponents had an OPS of just .575.
James Paxton put up comparable numbers to Medina, except as a starter. He walked too many batters, but got some grounders, kept the ball in the park, and struck a bunch of hitters out. He was limited to 21 starts thanks to a knee injury, but he pitched really well after coming back from the injury. I am guessing we see him in Tacoma to start next year with a chance of pitching in the Majors if he pitches well and cuts down on the walks. Mauricio Robles failed spectacularly as a starter and Tacoma and was demoted to AA Jackson and used as a reliever. He wasn’t that great here either, but was less embarrassing. Between the two levels, he managed to walk nearly 20% of the batters he faced. That is not good if you were wondering.
Taijuan Walker was the youngest player in the league for most of the year, and still pitched at a roughly league average rate. His K/BB was above average, as he walked slightly less batters than an average pitcher in the Southern League did and struck out slightly more batters. He had a little bit of a problem with homers and didn’t get many ground-balls. He gave up an OPS of .744 versus the league average of .709. Brandon Maurer was extremely interesting, with a 3.05 FIP and 3.91 SIERA. He had a roughly average strikeout percentage, but didn’t walk batters and kept the ball in the park. You would like to see him get more grounders and less line drives, but opponents hit just .260/.329/.346 against him. ‘
Jandy Sena had a decent year in Jackson by getting a ton of grounders and limiting line drives. He pitched in 5 games in Tacoma and 3 in High Desert as well, but had some injury problems later in the year. He really struggled to miss bats though, and walked too many batters for such a minuscule strikeout rate. Veteran Steve Garrison was a disappointment. He got some starts with Tacoma in the middle of the year, but was pretty bad and was demoted back to Jackson. He didn’t miss many bats and gave up a lot of homers. He didn’t get many grounders at all, and watched hitters have a .827 OPS again despite being a guy who got to pitch in a game for the Yankees last year. Moises Hernandez, the brother of Felix, had a miserable year, actually pitching worse this year than he did last year in Jackson. He allowed nearly 2 runners per inning and had a huge line drive rate and more walks than strikeouts.
Nate Tenbrink played in just 44 games thanks to injury and rest late in the year. He hit well though, with a .921 OPS. He stole 5 bases but was caught 3 times, but hit 8 homers. He struck out a ton (30.8% of the time exactly) but did walk some. Rich Poythress had a really nice year, striking out just 8.8% of the time and walking 13.9% of the time. You would like to see more power with his positional value, but efficient hitters are valuable as well.
Joe Dunigan popped 25 homers and had a .251 ISO and stole 14 bases. However, he is also 26 and struck out an amazing 37% of the time, walking just 8% of the time. His numbers (not his power numbers obviously, but his overall OBP) were somewhat inflated with a large BABIP (over .360). Chris Petit played in 61 games for Jackson (signing early in the season) and hit .273/.357/.440 before being released. The 27 year old latched on to the Rockies organization and played in 24 games between AA and AAA and played pretty well. Kalian Sams is nearly 26 and had a very similar year to Dunigan. There were strikeouts (28.8% of the time), stolen bases (13 and 0 caught stealings), and homers (11 with .206 ISO). Earlier this year, I called Sams the poor man’s Dunigan. Statistically that bore out as well. His line drive rate wasn’t that impressive, and he didn’t walk enough to justify the strikeouts.
Johermyn Chavez was DFA’d but stuck with the team. This year he played in 73 games and was okay with an OPS .027 points above league average. He struck out a little too much, but walked well over league average. He didn’t show an improvement in power though, and was just 2 for 6 in stolen base attempts. He hits a lot of ground-balls. Chih-Hsien Chiang was also DFA’d, but also stuck around. He hit a ton of ground-balls, and didn’t walk hardly at all. He played some in Tacoma but was demoted after failing to post an OPS of .600. It was not a good offensive year for him, and he doesn’t provide much value on the bases (3 for 5 in stolen base attempts). Eric Campbell was released after 58 games in which he hit .250/.330/.383. He then went on to play in Independent ball. Ralph Henriquez played in 4 games with Tacoma and 43 with Jackson before being released. His combined slash line was .232/.272/.348 and he hit 3 homers and stole 3 bases.
Denny Almonte struck out a ton but balanced it with some walks, some steals, and a touch of power. His overall numbers aren’t that impressive, but some of the different tools and abilities do come out in the stat line. He is just going to have to hit more consistently. 27 year old Leury Bonilla played in 17 games for AAA Tacoma and held his own in the small sample size. Of course, most of the year was spent in AA, where he didn’t hit as well (.644 OPS, exactly .100 points below his AAA total). He struck out too much, didn’t walk enough, and was a horrible baserunner. His ISO was just .068. Jesus Sucre hit for similar (lack of) power, but didn’t strikeout (or walk) much at all. Daniel Carroll had his season ruined by injuries, and played just 21 games for AA Jackson (3 AZL games). It is really hard to evaluate anything statistically, but he did steal 7 bases and hit a homer in the small sample size. Francisco Martinez had an extremely disappointing season, with just a .611 OPS in 94 games. An injury cut into some of his games, and he did steal 27 bases and walked nearly 11% of the time. However, the lack of power was really apparent and he hit a lot of ground-balls. Gabriel Noriega played in 83 games with Jackson before being demoted to High Desert. As you would expect, he hit better in High Desert than Jackson, but that isn’t exactly a hard thing to do. Combined, he hit .229/277/.271 and stole 3 bases and was caught 4 times. His value is in his defense (something these season reviews haven’t talked very much about, but the scouting reports always do), but you have to hit at least a little bit.
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Favorite general sports moment: The Texas versus USC college football national championship comes to mind, as does Gary Matthews Jr. catch on July 1st 2006.
Favorite Seattle Sports Moment: King Felix throwing a perfect game against the Rays
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