Johnson City Cards Starter of the Year: 2010

Boone Whiting, an 18th round pick in the 2010 First Year Player Draft, is The Cardinal Nation/Scout.com Johnson City Cardinals Pitcher of the Year.

With the tandem (piggy-back) starting pitcher system utilized at Johnson City this year, there were twice as many "starting pitchers" in the mix for Pitcher of the Year.  The "tandem" starter system is a somewhat controversial pitch-count based system utilized at the lower levels of the Cardinals' minor league system.  The intent of the system is to prevent injuries while still exposing ten (or more) pitchers to several starting opportunities.  The system forces pitchers to learn early in their pro careers the importance of being pitch efficient.  Opponents of the system believe that it delays the inevitable progression of the starters to the higher pitch counts they will see in the higher levels of the minors.  Proponents believe it is a good system for many pitchers who are working in professional baseball for the first time and who are coming from college or high school programs that may have overworked them. 

 

Within the Johnson City system there were five tandems of two pitchers each (ten total).  The five primary starters are limited to 70-90 pitches and the secondary starters are limited to 40-65 pitches.  Each tandem (or pair) of pitchers generally rotates their starts every six days.  This gives each starter no more than about 150 pitches a week in game action.  The pitch counts and start opportunities vary from pitcher to pitcher based mostly on their health and experience.  

 

Hopefully this report will help give readers an idea of which of the tandem starters performed best.  The highest ranked pitchers will likely return as starters in 2011 while the pitchers that struggled may either return to the Johnson City tandem system next year or become relievers.  This report will review who was eligible for "Pitcher of the Year", provide detailed end-of-the-year statistics for each starter, and will break down the statistics to support the final tandem starter ranking. 

 

Note:  This report will not address Johnson City's relievers.  The report "Johnson City Cards Reliever of the Year: 2010" summarizes the seven relievers used by Johnson City this year. 

 

Who Were Johnson City's Starters?

 

The roster saw a total of twelve starting pitchers during the 2010 season.  Nine of those starters (Ryan Copeland, Trevor Rosenthal, Boone Whiting, Jeff Nadeau, Angel De Jesus, Tyrell Jenkins, Cale Johnson, Hector Hernandez, and Pat Daugherty) played exclusively for Johnson City.

 

Johnson City began the season with just nine of their ten tandem pitching spots filled so it seemed likely that they would add a pitcher to the system before the end of the year.  Many speculated and hoped that an early signing of Tyrell Jenkins or completion of US visa paperwork for Carlos Matias (now known as Carlos Martinez) might allow them to fill the vacant spot.  However, Jenkins signed late and Martinez's visa issue dragged on.

 

Two of the three starters that played for more than one level this year moved during Week 2.  LHP Dean Kiekhefer (pictured) made one start, a loss, out of the tandem system in Johnson City before being promoted to Quad Cities as a reliever.  Since most of Kiekhefer's innings pitched (IPs) were in the Midwest League, he was eligible for Quad Cities Reliever of the Year honors.  RHP Charllan Jimenez was promoted into the Johnson City tandem starting pitcher system from the GCL to replace Kiekhefer. 

 

The last pitcher to play at more than one level was also the tenth tandem starter for Johnson City.  After Batavia starting pitcher Kevin Siegrist got off to a rough start in the NYPL, he was reassigned from Batavia to Johnson City.  Although Siegrist split his time equally in games (seven each with Batavia and Johnson City), he will be competing for Johnson City Pitcher of the Year since he threw 32.2 of his 53.2 innings in the Appalachian League. 

 

Pitchers Eligible for Johnson City Pitcher of the Year (11):  Ryan Copeland, Trevor Rosenthal, Kevin Siegrist, Boone Whiting, Jeff Nadeau, Angel De Jesus, Tyrell Jenkins, Cale Johnson, Charllan Jimenez, Hector Hernandez, and Pat Daugherty.  

 

Injuries and Lost Playing Time

 

RHP Trevor Rosenthal was the only one of the eleven tandem starters that lost significant playing time to injury this year.  Rosenthal experienced some pain in his right pitching elbow after his longest start of the year in Game 24.  Doctors prescribed rest.  Rosenthal was removed from the piggy-back pitching system and his pairing with Charllan Jimenez.  Rosenthal rehabbed and returned to the tandem system in Game 43 on a reduced pitch count.  "Rosie" missed about three starts and about 20-25 innings with the injury.  Rosenthal was able to build back up to 56 pitches in his third start after the injury however; he looked like he was laboring toward the end of his appearance in Game 53.  Rosenthal made four more relief appearances, including two important ones in the playoffs, to finish the year.  His longest outing of his last four was 33 pitches. 

 

RHP Charllan Jimenez missed his scheduled start in Game 49 on Wednesday August 11 due to sickness.  Jimenez returned to his normal spot in the tandem rotation in Game 55 on Friday August 20. 

 

Tandem Starting Pitchers

 

Listed below were the pairings for Johnson City in 2010.  The pairings began with just nine members, expanded to ten after the addition of LHP Kevin Siegrist and the return of RHP Trevor Rosenthal from elbow soreness, and then ended at eleven with the addition of RHP Tyrell Jenkins. 

 

1A/1B:  LHP Hector Hernandez/LHP Ryan Copeland

2A/2B:  RHP Angel De Jesus/LHP Pat Daugherty

3A/3B:  RHP Cale Johnson/Bullpen and RHP Trevor Rosenthal (Week 6)

4A/4B:  RHP Trevor Rosenthal (Weeks 1-4) and LHP Kevin Siegrist (Week 5)/LHP Dean Kiekhefer (Week 1) and RHP Charllan Jimenez (Week 2)

5A/5B/5C:  RHP Boone Whiting/LHP Jeff Nadeau/RHP Tyrell Jenkins (Week 9)

 

Pitching coach Doug White

 

The playoff rotation went to these four pitchers:

 

1:  LHP Ryan Copeland

2:  RHP Cale Johnson

3:  RHP Boone Whiting

4:  LHP Kevin Siegrist

 

RHP Trevor Rosenthal became a key reliever during the playoffs.  None of the other six starters (Hernandez, De Jesus, Daugherty, Jimenez, Nadeau, and Jenkins) saw any action during the playoffs. 

 

Starting Pitcher Acronyms 

 

BAA is batting average allowed.  The lower the better.  A number of .200 or below is very good.   

 

BABIP is batting average on balls in play.  This is a measure of the number of batted balls, excluding home runs, which are hits.  The exact formula used here for a pitcher is (H-HR)/(BF-BB-HBP-SO-HR).  The average BABIP in the Appy League this year, according to Baseball America, was .316.  Numbers significantly lower than .316 normally indicate that a pitcher was "lucky".  Numbers significantly higher than .316 normally indicate that a pitcher was "unlucky". 

 

BB is a walk.  The fewer the better. 

 

BB/9 is walks allowed per nine innings pitched.  The lower the better.  BB/9 = 9*BB/IP.

 

BF is batters faced.

 

BS is a blown save.  The fewer the better. 

 

CS is the number of base runners caught stealing while the pitcher was pitching. 

 

CS% is a calculation of the percent of base runners caught stealing while the pitcher was on the mound.  Although catchers typically have more control over CS% than pitchers, the higher this is the better.  CS% = 100*CS/(SB + CS). 

 

E is an error.  T is throwing and PO is pick-off.  None of the starters had any fielding or missed catch errors. 

 

ER is earned runs allowed.  A run is "earned" if bad fielding defense didn't contribute to the run scoring. 

 

ERA is earned run average.  ERA is calculated as nine times the earned runs allowed divided by the innings pitched.  ERA = 9*ER/IP. 

 

FIP is fielding independent pitching.  It is similar to ERA and uses a constant to allow comparison to ERA.  It is a measure of all things directly under a pitcher's control.  The formula used is [(HR*13 + (BB+HBP-IBB)*3 - SO*2)/IP] + 3.2.  FIP helps you understand how well a pitcher pitched, independent of how well the fielders fielded.  The lower the FIP the better. 

 

G is the number of games appeared in. 

 

GF is the number of games the pitcher finished.  The "closer" typically leads the team. 

 

GO/AO is ground out per air out.  With the Cardinal organizational preference of pitchers "pitching to contact" with a good sinker, the bigger the GO/AO, the better.   A pitcher with a GO/AO of two or greater relies heavily on a sinker such as a slider, cut fastball, splitter, or 2-seam fastball. 

 

H is hits allowed.  The fewer the better.

 

H/9 is hits allowed per nine innings pitched.  The lower the better.  H/9 = 9*H/IP. 

 

HBP is hit by pitch.  This can be a good or bad stat.  The bad side is that it leads to a base runner.  The good side is that it shows that a pitcher is willing to pitch inside. 

 

HLD is a hold.  The more the better.  However, don't read too much into this stat.  A pitcher can pitch poorly and still record a hold. 

 

HR is home runs allowed.  The fewer the better.

 

H/9 is home runs allowed per nine innings pitched.  The lower the better.  HR/9 = 9*HR/IP.

 

IBB is intentional walks. 

 

Inherited is the number of runners that were on base when a pitcher entered a game. 

 

IP is innings pitched.  To be considered a league leader in the Appy League, a pitcher needed to maintain a minimum of 0.8 IP per "league-game".  That corresponds to 54 and 2/3 IP.  With a piggy-back or tandem starting pitching system, the maximum number of IP is roughly 60 for a starter.

 

IS% is the percentage of inherited runners that scored.  The lower the better.  A pitcher with a low IS% is more likely to be inserted in a game during an inning (rather than starting his own inning).  IS% = 100*Scored/Inherited. 

 

L (also LHP) is left handed (also left-handed pitcher).

 

PO is a pick-off.  Left-handed pitchers typically have more than right-handed pitchers and this was certainly true this year with the tandem starters (10-of-13). 

 

R (also RHP) is runs allowed or right handed (also right-handed pitcher).  The fewer runs the better.

 

RISP is runners in scoring position (second or third base).  

 

SB is stolen bases allowed.  The catcher typically has more control over this stat however, a big number is not good for a pitcher. 

 

Scored is the number of inherited runners that scored.  The fewer that score the better. 

 

SO is a strikeout.  The more the better.

 

SO/9 is strikeouts per nine innings pitched.  The bigger the better.  These are almost always higher for relievers since they pitch fewer innings.  SO/9 = 9*SO/IP.

 

SO/BB is strikeouts per walk.  The bigger the better. 

 

SV is a save.  The more the better.

 

SV% is save percentage.  SV% is calculated as 100 times the saves divided by the sum of saves and blown saves.  SV% = 100*SV/(SV+BS). 

 

W is wins.  Due to limited pitch counts for the starters, relievers get a lot of these.

 

WHIP is walks plus hits per inning pitched.  The lower the better.  1.0 and below is considered very good.  WHIP = (BB+H)/IP. 

 

WP is a wild pitch.  Catchers can have a big impact on this stat however, in general, the more WPs, the less control the pitcher has of his pitches.  Therefore, the fewer the better. 

 

Starter Team Statistics and Summary

 

The twelve starters combined for a 31-19 record over 450 IP (77% of the team's total IPs).  As a group, they averaged 9.3 H/9, 0.8 HR/9, 1.8 BB/9, 8.2 SO/9, and 4.5 SO/BB.  They combined for a 1.24 WHIP, 3.78 ERA, and 3.28 FIP.  Their BABIP of .323 was slightly above the league average of .316.  They caught 58% of the possible base stealers.  Ryan Copeland was voted the Appalachian League left handed All-Star pitcher and the overall Pitcher of the Year. 

 

Pitcher Statistics

 

Listed in the table below are statistics for the top eight Johnson City starters in 2010.  "Rank" is how the top eight starters were ranked.  This ranking was based on a combination of statistics and first-hand observations.  Tyrell Jenkins was not ranked since he signed late and faced just twelve batters over three innings. 

 

Starter Whiting Rosenthal Copeland Siegrist Johnson Nadeau De Jesus Daugherty
Rank 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Age 21.2 yr 20.4 yr 22.4 yr 21.2 yr 23.1 yr 21.3 yr 21.6 yr 22.1 yr
Throws RH RH LH LH RH LH RH LH
W 5 3 7 4 5 1 3 2
L 3 0 0 3 4 2 1 2
ERA 3.5 2.25 1.86 1.93 3.61 2.77 4.41 6
FIP 2.63 2.58 2.69 3.41 2.9 3.2 3.24 3.99
G 13 10 13 7 13 13 13 13
GS 9 6 6 5 10 3 7 6
GF 0 1 0 0 2 4 0 0
SV 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
HLD 1 1 2 0 0 2 2 1
IP 54 32 53.1 32.2 62.1 39 51 42
H 54 23 39 28 77 37 53 52
R 28 10 13 12 34 17 27 33
ER 21 8 11 7 25 12 25 28
HR 6 1 3 3 2 2 4 5
BB 5 7 7 6 8 10 14 15
SO 68 30 48 31 36 28 52 46
HBP 4 2 3 4 1 0 4 5
WP 4 0 3 1 3 5 2 5
BF 225 125 204 128 269 166 214 193
SB 2 3 2 0 1 3 5 5
CS 4 1 3 5 2 4 8 4
CS% 67% 25% 60% 100% 67% 57% 62% 44%
PO 0 1 2 1 2 3 0 3
E-T 0 0 0 2 0 0 1 2
E-PO 1 1 0 1 0 0 0 0
WHIP 1.09 0.94 0.86 1.04 1.36 1.21 1.31 1.6
BABIP 0.338 0.259 0.252 0.298 0.338 0.278 0.35 0.385
BAA 0.25 0.2 0.202 0.237 0.301 0.239 0.276 0.302
BAA vs. R 0.239 0.269 0.205 0.242 0.327 0.248 0.252 0.307
BAA vs. L 0.281 0.054 0.185 0.222 0.264 0.192 0.34 0.286
Inherited 0 0 3 0 3 2 0 0
Scored 0 0 1 0 2 2 0 0
IS% NA NA 33% NA 67% 100% NA NA
GO/AO 0.88 3.27 1.02 1.5 1.34 0.81 1.82 2.04
H/9 9 6.5 6.6 7.7 11.1 8.5 9.4 11.1
HR/9 1 0.3 0.5 0.8 0.3 0.5 0.7 1.1
BB/9 0.8 2 1.2 1.7 1.2 2.3 2.5 3.2
SO/9 11.3 8.4 8.1 8.5 5.2 6.5 9.2 9.9
SO/BB 13.6 4.3 6.9 5.2 4.5 2.8 3.7 3.1

 

The Rankings Explained

 

#1 Boone Whiting:  Whiting accomplished something very special this year for Johnson City.  He led the starters in both strikeout rate AND walk rate.  To say he was in control this year is an understatement.  Whiting's strikeout rate of 11.3 SO/9 was the only starter in double digits.  Whiting's walk rate of 0.8 BB/9 was the only starter less than one.  Either stat alone would be a significant accomplishment but to combine the two is very impressive.  Whiting's most noteworthy performance of the year may have been his postseason win in Elizabethton to open the final round of the playoffs.  Whiting's SO/BB ratio of 13.6 was almost two times better than the Appy League Pitcher of the Year (Copeland; 6.9 SO/BB).  Whiting led the starters by striking out 30.2% of the BF while walking just 2.2% of the BF.  Whiting was second among the starters in FIP (2.63), BAA vs. R (.239), and BF (225).  The secret to his success is the three pitches he can throw for strikes.  Whiting sat 85-88 MPH on August 7 and topped out at 91 MPH on his fastball.  He appears to throw a curve and a changeup and/or slider for strikes.  His curve was around 73-74 MPH and his changeup and/or slider was 76-80 MPH.  His large number of strikeouts revolves around his ability to throw strikes consistently at three different speeds.  Whiting has good "pitchability" as Pitching Coach Doug White would say.  If there is any concern, it is his inability to get groundball outs.  He was last among the starters with an 18.7% groundout of BF.  He was second to last among the starters with a 0.88 GO/AO and a 1.0 HR/9.  He was a little bit unlucky this year with a .338 BABIP.  If he can add a good sinking fastball to his pinpoint control, his future looks bright.  However, his slight build (6'1" and 165 lbs – the lightest of all pitchers on the roster), lack of a sinker, and lack of velocity will be his biggest hurdles in his ascension through the Cardinals' upper minor leagues.

 

 

#2 Trevor Rosenthal: Injury was the biggest reason that "Rosie" was bumped to second on my list.  However, the Cardinal organization loves fastball velocity combined with a great sinker and they also love Rosie for that combo.  The elbow injury, even though it was "minor", is a concern for me.  His apparent lack of stamina a few times this year will also likely send Rosenthal to the bullpen in the future.  However, he looks to me to be a VERY good set-up man or reliever for the future.  Think Kyle McClellan (a former Johnson City Cardinal) with a little more velocity.  The injury put Rosenthal at the bottom of the IP (32) and BF (125) ratings among the starters so he has a much smaller sample size than the others.  However, he ranked first among the starters with 6.5 H/9, 0.3 HR/9, 2.58 FIP, 3.27 GO/AO, 0.200 BAA, 0.054 BAA vs. L, and 0.174 BAA with runners on base.  Those are some impressive statistical categories for a team leader.  It should be noted that the righty Rosenthal has a substantial "reverse split".  He allowed only two base hits (over 12.1 IP) to lefties all year.  One area of concern could be his relatively high knee lift from the stretch.  He can be pretty deliberate on his delivery to home (1.4 seconds was not unusual).  On August 24, according to the Bristol White Sox scoreboard, Rosenthal sat 92-94 MPH with his fastball and touched 95 MPH.  The Cardinals' radar gun had him touching 98 MPH.  His relatively infrequent secondary offering (presumably a changeup) was 81-84 MPH with one pitch (a slider?) clocked at 88 MPH.  Rosenthal's .259 BABIP would indicate that he was a little bit lucky but it was rare to see any of his pitches squared up so that is debatable.  When Rosenthal misses the strike zone it is usually on the arm side which indicates to me that he has very good tail or run on his fastball.  This good movement away from lefties could be the key to his success against them.  Hopefully, his arm woes are behind him and he can make a healthy run at a starting pitcher position with Quad Cities next year.  Rosenthal was the youngest of the eight ranked tandem starters at 20.4 years of age.

 

 

#3 Ryan Copeland:  Many of you may be asking how the League's Pitcher of the Year could be third in my rankings.  In fact, I asked myself that question several times.  After all, Copeland led all starters with 7 W, 0 L, 1.86 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, and .205 BAA vs. R.  Copeland will be the first to admit that he will not blow many fastballs past you.  He told me at the "Meet the Cardinals" in June that he sits 90 MPH.  On August 22 on the Bristol White Sox scoreboard, he sat 84-86 MPH with his fastball and touched 87 MPH.  His strikeout pitch is a changeup (76-78 MPH).  He also had offerings in the lower 70s and the low 80s.  He indicated to me that his cut fastball was his worst pitch in June.  He also throws a slider.  Copeland had the lowest BABIP (.252) of all the starters so he may have been fortunate to turn many of his batted balls into outs.  His 2.69 FIP was very good and was third among the starters however; it was almost a full run higher than his ERA.  Much like a left-handed version of Whiting, he doesn't induce many groundball outs.  In fact, he had the third worst GO/AO among the starters at 1.02.  There is no denying that his performance this year was very good however; his lack of velocity and low groundball rate will likely translate to trouble in the upper minors.  Hopefully, Copeland will prove me wrong and will excel next year as a starter in Quad Cities. 

 

 

#4 Kevin Siegrist:  The second lefty on the list looked very good for most of the half season he had in Johnson City.  Interestingly, he led the starters in just one category but it was a good one; a .143 BAA with RISP.  His 3.41 FIP was well above his 1.93 ERA but he had the highest unearned ERA (i.e. poorest defense behind him) of all the starters.  Much of that was his own doing however as he committed the most errors (3) of all the starters.  There were no pitch velocities in Bristol when he pitched there but his fastball appears to have pretty good pop.  Siegrist will also show different arm angle releases (see pictures below).  Since he joined the team late, I didn't get a chance to talk to him about his pitches.  Siegrist may have saved his best for last.  The most batters he faced all year (24) was in the League Championship clinching win against Elizabethton.

 

 

#5 Cale Johnson:  The veteran workhorse of the starters posted team highs with 10 GS, 62.1 IP, and 269 BF.  Johnson had eleven games with 20 or more BFs.  Unfortunately, he was last among the starters with just 5.2 SO/9 and a .327 BAA vs. R.  These two statistics were what dropped him down the list for me.  Johnson may have been a little bit unlucky with his .338 BABIP but his FIP was a very respectable 2.90.  He also was second best among the starters at keeping the ball in the field of play (0.3 HR/9).  However, he had a lot of balls in play.  His 11.1 H/9 was one of the highest and his 13.4% SO of total BF was the team's lowest.  On August 24 on the Bristol White Sox scoreboard, he sat 84-86 MPH with his fastball and touched 88 MPH (first and sixth innings).  He also had offerings of 81-83 MPH, 75-78 MPH (changeup), and 71-73 MPH (curve).  Johnson had one game with 30 BF and no SO and one game with 13 BF and 6 SO.  Let's hope that the Johnson that pitched that second game (August 15) shows up next spring and in future years.

 

 

#6 Jeff Nadeau:  The third lefty on the list pitched in the shadow of his tandem pair, Boone Whiting, most of the season.  Nadeau, perhaps fitting of the "crafty lefty" namesake, led the starters with 0 HB, 3 PO, 4 GF, and .143 BAA with two outs and RISP.  However, he was last among the starters with 5 WP, 2.8 K/BB, and 0.81 GO/AO.  Nadeau was last among the starters in percentage of batters faced that either struck out or grounded out (40.4%).  Nadeau's 3.20 FIP was fifth best among the starters.  His fastball on Bristol's scoreboard sat 82-85 MPH and touched 88 MPH (last of 47 pitches on August 7).  His changeup, which sits in the low to mid 70s, is pretty good when located well.

 

 

#7 Angel De Jesus:  De Jesus was part of the "skyscraper" tandem as I liked to call them.  De Jesus and Pat Daugherty were the two tallest players on the roster at 6'6" and were paired together.  De Jesus had the third best SO/9 (9.2) and GO/AO (1.82) among the starters.  These two stats are some organizationally important stats so the Cardinals must like him.  However, he really struggled against lefties this year with a team worst .340 BAA vs. L.  De Jesus had a pretty high .350 BABIP so luck was apparently not with him this year. 

 

#8 Pat Daugherty:  Unfortunately, the thing that sticks in my mind with Daugherty was his absolutely horrible performance with RISP.  He just never seemed to be able to get out of a jam without giving up runs.  Daugherty's BAA with RISP was .311 and with RISP and two outs, it was an even worse .364.  Both were the highest on the team.  LHP Daugherty was very similar to RHP De Jesus in many respects.  His strikeout rate (9.9 SO/9; second best on team) was good however; his walk rate (7.8% of total BF, last on team) was a little high.  Daugherty was worst among the starters with 5 HB, 3.2 BB/9, and a 1.60 WHIP.  There is hope for better performance in the future for Daugherty if the Cardinals have not lost patience.  Daugherty's .385 BABIP was the highest of all starters and his 3.99 FIP was over two runs per game lower than his 6.00 ERA. 

 

 

Hector Hernandez:  At the end of a disappointing year, the soft spoken and laid back Hernandez seemed to be resigned to the fact that he could be returning to Johnson City in 2011.  The left-hander that was part of the opening day pairing with Ryan Copeland only had one 20 or more BF appearance in a team high 14 G.  Hernandez was last among the starters with a 6.85 ERA and a .359 BAA with runners on base.  Hernandez had a whopping 12 WP, more than double any other pitcher.  On August 22 on the Bristol White Sox scoreboard, he sat 85-87 MPH with his two seam fastball and touched 88 MPH (second and fifth innings).  He also had offerings of 74-76 MPH (changeup), and 71-73 MPH (curve).  He gets most of his swinging strikes on his changeup and curve.  There is, however, some reason to be hopeful for the future.  Hernandez had the fourth best SO/9 among the starters (8.9), the fourth best GO/AO (1.51), the second unluckiest BABIP (.353), and was the youngest starting pitcher (prior to Jenkins' arrival) at just 19.6 years old.  Johnson City would love to have him back for a breakout year. 

 

 

Charllan Jimenez:  If any pitcher was routinely negatively impacted by poor defense behind him, it was Jimenez.  His unearned run average was 2.43.  After moving up from the GCL shortly after the start of the year, Jimenez seemed to have very good bullpen sessions only to follow those up with poor game performances.  Jimenez led the starters with 3 HLD but was last among the starters with 11.6 H/9, 1.6 HR/9, 4.76 FIP, and .305 BAA.  Jimenez tied with Nadeau at last among the starters in percentage of batters faced that either struck out or grounded out (40.4%).  If Jimenez could start innings like he finished off innings in two-out jams, he would have put together a solid season.  His BAA to leadoff batters was .394.  His BAA with RISP and two outs was .176. 

 

Tyrell Jenkins:  Jenkins' only appeared in two games toward the end of the year.  Both of his appearances were detailed in my weekly reports from earlier this year.  His first outing was only six pitches while his second outing was a longer but less controlled 26 pitches.  Due to the small sample size, he wasn't ranked but I could see why he was highly regarded by scouts.  His delivery appeared to be effortless, he genuinely wants to be a baseball player, his pitches have that "whiffle-ball" like movement that you sometimes see with someone like Ubaldo Jimenez, and his changeup looks to be very good.  Control could be an issue over the next few years since his pitches appear to have so much movement.  His 0.00 ERA was a little deceiving as his FIP was 3.87.  Hopefully he can put together a Shelby Miller like year with Quad Cities next year. 

 

 

Starting Pitcher Fielding

 

As a team, Johnson City finished eighth in team fielding percentage (.961).  They committed 103 errors (12 by pitchers) for an average of 1.6 errors per game.  The team allowed 63 unearned runs in 66 games to finish fifth in that category.  The starters suffered 53 of the unearned runs to average 1.06 unearned runs per nine innings pitched (uERA).  The top three pitchers negatively impacted by unearned runs were Jimenez (2.43 uERA), Hernandez (1.41 uERA), and Siegrist (1.38 uERA).  

 

All of the pitchers combined for 12 errors with the starters contributing 11 of those.  Interestingly enough, two of the three pitchers above were impacted by their own errors as Siegrist (2 E-T and 1 E-PO), Daugherty (2 E-T), and Hernandez (2 E-PO) led the starters with errors. 

 

Dyar Miller "holding court" in the bullpen

 

Overall, the starters (58 CS%) were about the same as the relievers (50 CS%) at catching base stealers but the right-handed starters (62 CS%) were a little better than the left-handed starters (53 CS%).  However, as expected, the LH starters were much better at PO than the RH starters: 

 

Left-Handed Starters (5):
SB CS CS% PO
14 16 53% 10
Right-Handed Starters (5):
SB CS CS% PO
11 18 62% 3

 

Starting Pitcher (Top Ten) League Leaders

 

Boone Whiting (5-3, 3.50 ERA) was tied for fifth in the league in strikeouts (68).  Whiting missed qualifying for the league leaders in WHIP (1.09, would have been 9th) by just two thirds of an inning pitched.

 

Ryan Copeland (7-0, 1.86 ERA) was tied for second in the league in wins (7).  Copeland missed qualifying for the league leaders in both WHIP (0.86, would have been 1st) and ERA (1.86, would have been 1st) by just one and one third innings pitched.   

 

Charllan Jimenez (3, tied for sixth) was among the league leaders in holds.

 

Top Playoff Starters

 

The playoff rotation went to these four pitchers:

 

1:  LHP Ryan Copeland

2:  RHP Cale Johnson

3:  RHP Boone Whiting

4:  LHP Kevin Siegrist

 

RHP Trevor Rosenthal became a key reliever during the playoffs.  None of the other six starters (Hernandez, De Jesus, Daugherty, Jimenez, Nadeau, and Jenkins) saw any action during the playoffs.

 

The pitching was very impressive as the four starters were 4-0.  The starters combined for a 1.85 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 0.7 BB/9, and 8.5 SO/9 over 24.1 IP.  The defense behind them was good enough to allow no unearned runs. 

 

Kevin Siegrist was second in WHIP (0.45) and third in ERA (1.35).

 

Boone Whiting was tied for third (ranked by innings pitched) in BB/9 (0.00).  Whiting led all four starters with 10.5 SO/9. 

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