Two Mariners‘ AAA players, including one that has played in the majors for the Mariners, played in the AAA All-Star game on Wednesday night. Luis Jimenez started the game as the DH and Guillermo Quiroz came in as a sub and played catcher.
Luis Jimenez got ahead 2-0 in his first at-bat. He then swung at a breaking pitch in the zone and weakly fouled it off. Jimenez then took 2 straight pitches outside of the zone for a walk. Facing Matt Harvey in his 2nd at-bat, he took the first pitch outside for ball 1. Jimenez then got a pitch down the middle but mistimed it and fouled it off. He then chased a breaking pitch for strike 2 and a swing and miss. Jimenez followed this by taking an inside fastball before fouling off one low and inside. He was then fooled by a breaking ball and had no chance in checking his swing.
Bat speed and pitch recognition looked like problems for Jimenez against a pitcher who is probably about to start his big league career. Jimenez faced Rudy Owens, a lefty, in his 3rd at-bat. After taking a couple balls to get up 2-0, a moving fastball caught the outside corner. Jimenez took a high inside fastball to turn the count to 3-1. Jimenez then comically took a gigantic swing on a change and fell down. At 3-2, he was able to check his swing this time and walked on a low breaking ball. His 4th at-bat was versus Tampa Bay’s Dane De La Rosa. The at-bat started when he took a curve low for ball. Jimenez then fouled off a 90 MPH fastball, and then another one at 92 MPH as he couldn’t catch up with them. Down 1-2, he got another fastball and pounded it into the ground for for a weak ground-out.
I did like the scouting report that the MLB Network put up on the screen:
Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com believes that he can hold his own at the big league level as a hitter if he is given a chance.I just don’t see the reason for the Mariners to bring him up.
Guillermo Quiroz came in to hit in the 6th. In his first at-bat, he took a low breaking ball, then chased a slider in the dirt. He fouled off the next breaking ball that was probably a ball down low. Quiroz, down 1-2, took a fastball just off the plate followed by an inside moving fastball to make it a full count. To stay alive, Quiroz fouled off a low moving fastball before he was fooled by a changeup and swung through it for a strikeout. In his 2nd at-bat, he faced Chris Bootcheck who only throws about 87-88 MPH. He took an inside fastball for a called strike to start the count, and then took a breaking ball to make it 1-1. Quiroz then chased one and fouled it off. He took a high fastball before chasing a high breaking pitch for a whiff and a strikeout.
Defensively he had some problems catching Chad Beck’s fastball, dropping it a couple of times. Defense usually isn’t Quiroz’s problem, as he is usually considered a good defensive catcher. Perhaps it is worth mentioning that defensive metrics have rated him negatively.