With the MLB regular season coming to an end, let’s take a look around baseball at all of our Wahoos currently playing pro ball. Today, we’ll take a look at the Major Leaguers. Tomorrow, we’ll check on the minors.
Javier Lopez, RP, San Francisco Giants – The Giants clinched a wild card berth on the final day of the regular season and will play the Mets on Wednesday in New York. Lopez pitched better in the second half of the season than the first, which is funny, considering the Giants' bullpen as a whole fell apart down the stretch. Maybe Lopez should've pitched more. On the season, he was 1-3 with a 4.05 ERA and a 1.46 WHIP. After the all-star break, he had a 2.92 ERA, which was largely due to keeping walks down. In the first half of the season, he walked 10 batters in 14 innings. He’s still the first lefty out of the pen for the Giants.
Ryan Zimmerman, 1B, Washington Nationals – Though the Nationals won the NL East and will have home field advantage in the NLDS against the Dodgers, they did it despite Zimmerman’s presence rather than because of it. For the season, Zim batted just .218 and had a .272 OBP. He hit 15 HRs and drove in 46. Though he’s still the #1 first baseman for the Nats, he may find himself on the bench against some right handed pitchers. His backup, Clint Robinson, bats lefty, but Robinson hasn’t been any better than Zim this year. Oh, Zim also did 2 stints on the DL this year, with minor injuries.
Mark Reynolds, 1B, Colorado Rockies – As the primary 1B for the Rockies, Reynolds had his best season in a while. Though he hit just 14 HRs, he batted .282, which is a career high. He had an .806 OPS and actually only struck out in about 28% of his ABs, which is pretty good for him (he’s over 36% for his career).
Brandon Guyer, OF, Cleveland Indians – For the 2nd year in a row, Guyer led the majors in HBP. You don't win any trophies for that, but it is still a skill. Guyer really put together a solid year, despite being traded during the season. As a member of the Rays, Guyer was only starting about 2 out of every 3 games, and getting some PH opportunities as well. He batted just .241 but had good peripherals, including 7 HRs and a .752 OPS. After the trade, he was used mostly as a PH and defensive replacement. He has raked though, batting .333 with a .907 OPS over 96 plate appearances. He’ll probably be the starting RF for the Indians in the postseason when they face a LHP.
Sean Doolittle, RP, Oakland Athletics – Though Doolittle missed roughly 2 months in the middle of the season, he pitched well. He ended the season with a 2-3 record, a 3.23 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. He struck out 45 and walked just 8 in 39 IP. He also had 4 saves. He had a problem with the long ball, giving up 6 HRs. Hopefully, he can stay healthy next year.
Phil Gosselin, 2B, Arizona Diamondbacks – Phil played off the bench for the Diamondbacks most of the season, getting just 33 starts. He was pretty good as a utility guy off the bench, playing 1B, 2B, 3B, LF and RF. All told, he batted .277 with a .692 OPS. He HR’d twice and stole 3 bases. He also had 12 doubles in just 220 ABs.
Tyler Wilson, SP/RP, Baltimore Orioles – Beginning in July, Wilson was shuttling back and forth between the majors and minors. He didn’t pitch particularly well in the majors, racking up a 5.27 ERA over 24 appearances (13 starts). He also had a 1.43 WHIP and struck out just 55 in 94 IP. He did manage to record 4 wins, versus 6 losses. In AAA, he wasn’t a whole lot better, with a 4.56 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP with 20 Ks over 23 IP. He was 2-0 in the minors.
Kyle Crockett, RP, Cleveland Indians – Like Wilson, Crockett was back and forth between the majors and the minors this year. Also like Wilson, Crockett didn’t pitch very well in the majors. He was good in 2014 as a rookie, but has since struggled. This year, he threw 16 innings in the majors and had a 5.06 ERA and a 1.44 WHIP. It isn’t his stuff, since he struck out 17 in those 16 innings. He was better in the minors, with a 3.90 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP, but still walked too many guys (11 BBs in 30 IP in the minors, 7 walks in 16 IP in the majors). His K-rate was actually lower in the minors than in the majors. It may be a case of bad luck, as opposing batters batted .348 on balls in play. (Batting average on balls in play, written as BABIP, is a measure of balls that fall in for hits. It excludes HRs and strikeouts from batting average. Studies have shown that pitchers have little control over this, and league averages are right around .300, so .348 is very high.) Crockett probably makes the Indians’ ALDS roster, largely to match up with David Ortiz.
Chris Taylor, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers – Though he’s still just 25 years old, Taylor is looking like a “quadruple-A” guy. That is, a guy who is too good for AAA, but not good enough for the majors. Taylor was traded from the Mariners to the Dodgers in June. Between the two teams, Taylor compiled 62 PAs and batted just .213 with a 622 OPS. He hit 1 HR and drove in 7. Almost all of that came with the Dodgers, as he had just 3 PAs in Seattle. Meanwhile, between 2 teams in AAA, Taylor batted .322 with an 870 OPS. He had 3 HRs and 37 RBI. He also stole 17 bases. Taylor is a pretty good defensive SS, but the Dodgers aren’t going to remove their phenom SS Corey Seager from a playoff game. Taylor is a long-shot to make the Dodgers postseason roster.
Jarrett Parker, OF, San Francisco Giants – Though he batted just .236 over 151 PAs with the Giants this year, he was a valuable addition to the team. He had a .751 OPS, thanks to 5 HRs and 19 walks. In the minors, Parker batted .273 with a 947 OPS. He hit 16 HRs and drove in 35 in just 53 games. Though a part time player, Parker will likely be on the Giants’ postseason roster. He’s a good defensive OF, has some pop at the plate, and the Giants’ starting OFs are all old and injury prone.
John Hicks, C, Detroit Tigers – Hicks spent time in AA, AAA and played one game in the majors in September for the Tigers. He went 1-for-2 with a double and a run scored. He started the season in AAA, but struggled so he was sent back to AA. He raked there for 14 games, then moved back up to AAA and raked there too. In AA Erie, he batted .388 with a 936 OPS along with a HR and a stolen base. In AAA, he played 70 games and batted .303 with a 841 OPS along with 8 HRs and 42 RBI.