Dave Stapleton and the Angels Rookie affiliate, Orem Owlz, gave themselves a run deep into the Pioneer League playoffs, while attaining the goal of developing every player to their best extent.
The Owlz finished the season with the best regular season record in the Pioneer League at 43-33, and battled through a tough playoff run, finally finishing their season losing in the Pioneer League Championship. The Championship run and win/loss record didn't just help the Owlz players and pitchers build a competitive spirit, but also helped in a large way with their development.
The Owlz offense finished in the top three of nearly every league statistic, leading the Pioneer League in doubles, slugging percentage, and total bases. The Owlz finished the season with a team .291/.358/.463 slash, helping them finish second in runs scored, runs per game, triples, home runs, runs batted in, batting average, and on base percentage.
The Orem pitching staff sat around the middle of the league, which is a bold note when pitching at a high elevation where balls travel further and quicker than the other stadiums in the league. The Owlz shined in limiting hits and walks with a team combined 1.450 WHIP, good enough for second best in the league. The Owlz finished third in hits allowed and hits per game.
G - Andrew Daniel, 63
PA - Andrew Daniel, 293
AB - Andrew Daniel, 259
R - Andrew Daniel, 49
H - Andrew Daniel, 88
2B - Andrew Daniel, 20
3B - Raul Linares, 5
HR - Fran Whitten, 8
RBI - Andrew Daniel / Zach Houchins, 39
SB - Andrew Daniel, 13
CS - Bo Way, 5
BB - Miguel Hermosillo, 29
SO - Caleb Adams, 70
BA - Zach Houchins, .388
OBP - Wade Wass, .461
SLG - Zach Houchins, .626
OPS - Zach Houchins, 1.068
TB - Andrew Daniel, 132
GDP - Ryan Seiz / Wendell Soto, 6
HBP - Wade Wass, 10
SH - Wendell Soto, 7
SF - Wendell Soto, 4
Wade Wass, Pioneer League Batting Champ (.388)
Andrew Daniel, sixth in batting average (.340)
Andrew Daniel, fifth in at bats (259)
Andrew Daniel, second in hits (88)
Andrew Daniel, second in doubles (20)
Andrew Daniel, fourth in extra base hits (29)
Andrew Daniel, third in runs scored (49)
Andrew Daniel, fifth in total bases (132)
Wendell Soto, first in sacrifice hits (7)
Wade Wass, first in hit by pitch (10)
Andrew Daniel, Second Baseman
Daniel finished the season leading the team in nearly every offensive category. He had a .340/.408/.510 slash over the season and reached base in 53 of his 63 games played, picking up hits in 48 of them. Daniel had four streaks of five consecutive games with a hit, including a 15-game hit-streak from July 11th-27th. Daniel had a .367/.449/.591 slash after the fourth inning of games.
Michael Strentz / Wade Wass, Catcher
Strentz spent nearly every day excelling behind the plate and at the plate. He finished the season with a .330/.360/.506 slash with 29 runs batted in and 29 runs scored in his 43 games. Strentz bat .420 in the final innings of games (seventh to ninth) and put together great numbers with runners in scoring position with two outs (.423/.423/.538 in 26 at bats). Strentz also threw out 29.4% of the runners who tried to steal on him.
Wass put together similar, but opposite numbers of Strentz, excelling in the early innings of games, with a .391/.468/.652 slash from the second to fourth innings of games. Wass also put together strong numbers against left-handed pitchers with a .423/.543/.808 slash. Wass and Strentz put together a .973 defensive average over the season.
Zach Houchins, Infielder
Houchins finished the season just short of enough at bats for a Pioneer League batting title, but he came close with his .388 batting average and .626 slugging percentage behind that. Houchins had 16 of his 36 games go for multi-hit games, 11 of those being three+ hit games. Houchins put his best numbers together with runners on (.469/.520/.688), runners on with two outs (.485/.514/.727), runners in scoring position (.578/.611/.867), runners in scoring position with two outs (.600/.630/.920), and the bases loaded (.750) to help give him 39 runs batted in for the season.
W - Arjenis Fernandez, 9
L - Arjenis Fernandez, 5
ERA - Eduardo Paredes, 1.33
G - Eduardo Paredes / Ramon Rodriguez, 19
SV - Eduardo Paredes, 7
IP - Arjenis Fernandez, 78.2
HR - Keynan Middleton, 9
BB - Michael Bolaski, 32
K - Keynan Middleton, 53
HBP - Angel Guerra, 7
WHIP - Ronnie Muck, 0.682
H/9 - Eduardo Paredes, 3.5
BB/9 - Ronnie Muck, 0.00
K/9 - Ronnie Muck, 14.1
K/BB - Zach Varela, 19.00
Arjenis Fernandez, sixth in ERA (4.23)
Arjenis Fernandez, first in wins (9)
Arjenis Fernandez, fourth in innings pitched (78.2)
Michael Bolaski, ninth in ERA (4.52)
Michael Bolaski, fifth in WHIP (1.39)
Michael Bolaski, second in against average (.244)
Eduardo Paredes, fifth in saves (7)
Eduardo Paredes, fifth in games finished (16)
Keynan Middleton, third in walks (30)
Keynan Middleton, third in against average (.260)
Arjenis Fernandez, Right-Handed Starter
Fernandez's ERA spiked with one poor start, but shined over the season, posting a near league leading 4.23 ERA. In his final four starts, he didn't allow more than a pair of runs to cross the plate. In clutch situations, Fernandez held batters to a .166 average.
Jordan Kipper / Jacob Kopra / Ronnie Muck / Eduardo Paredes / Ramon Rodriguez / Zach Varela, Right-Handed Relievers
May seem like a large load of names, but these were the names that consisted of the back end of the bullpen. Combined these pitchers put together a 2.65 ERA, 1.136 WHIP, 7.07 H/9, 2.52 BB/9, 9.58 K/9 and .283 against average. They also combined to convert 12 of 16 save opportunities, Paredes getting seven of his seven.
Jonah Wesely, Left-Handed Swingman
Wesely was used in multiple entities during the 2014 season, from starter, to piggy back, to relief, to closing roles. In Wesely's first 19 innings of relief, he didn't allow a run, and allowed just 13 base runners. Wesely finished the season with a 4.08 ERA and .218 against average. Wesely excelled in shutting down left-handed bats with his .149/.231/.234 against slash.
InsideTheHalos Players of the Year from Orem Owlz:
Most Valuable Player : Andrew Daniel
Batter of the Year : Andrew Daniel
Clutch Batter of the Year : Zach Houchins
Pitcher of the Year : Arjenis Fernandez
Starter of the Year : Arjenis Fernandez
Reliever of the Year : Eduardo Paredes
Surprise of the Year : Ronnie Muck