Johnson, Huber Earn Weekly Honors

A few new names poked their heads through the ground this past week, as the system starts to thrust its best foot forward. The gems of the system are still playing well, but there were a couple more impressive performances over the past seven days.


InsidethePark.com's Position Player of the Week


Robert Johnson, C - Wisconsin
When the Mariners drafted Johnson in the fourth round of last June's draft, they had a pretty good idea about his defensive talent and his ability to call a game. The offensive expectations weren't quite as high, but the University of Houston product has been as impressive as any catching prospect the system has seen in recent years, and this past week was his best stretch yet.

Johnson crammed nine hits into a 20 at-bat span (.450) while launching three home runs and driving in seven. For the year, the "defensive-minded" backstop is hitting .333 with four home runs and 18 RBI.


Honorable Mention

Asdrubal Cabrera, SS - Wisconsin
Cabrera returned from a sprained ankle late in April and has been on fire ever since. The Venezuelan defensive wizard turned up the heat with his bat last week, hitting .375 (9-for-24) with a home run and two 3-hit games. Cabrera added six runs scored and two RBI, and of course played flawless defense to go along with the offense he provided from three different spots in the lineup. The 20-year-old is hitting .370 with two home runs and seven RBI on the year.

Casey Craig, OF – Inland Empire
Craig stayed behind in extended spring training for most of April but has made the most of the few games he has played thus far in 2005. The San Diego native collected eight hits in 21 at-bats, including a double and a triple, and drove in three runs in four starts. Craig had three multi-hit games and hit in all but one game. The left-handed hitting 20-year-old is hitting .345 on the season.

Keep An Eye On...

Chris Snelling, OF - Tacoma
Snelling has yet to have a tough streak of at-bats this season and continued that trend this past week. The Miami-born 23-year-old hit .333 in 21 at-bats and added his third home run of the year. Snelling is hitting .424 with 16 RBI in just 18 games played for the Rainiers.

Michael Morse, SS - Tacoma
Morse has been steady all year and his 6-for-22 week stayed the course. The 6-foot-5 shortstop hit in five of seven games and belted his fourth home run of the season, while adding his 16th and 17th RBI, ranking him second on the team.

Adam Jones, SS – Inland Empire
Jones had seven hits in 23 at-bats last week, including two doubles, a triple and his fourth home run of the season. The pop Jones is showing with the bat is exactly what the club wants to see out of him now that he's playing everyday in the hitter-friendly California League. Jones is hitting .250 with 13 extra-base hits and 14 RBI for the season.


InsidethePark.com's Pitcher of the Week


Jon Huber, RHP – San Antonio
Huber went seven sensational innings versus Arkansas on May 5, only to get a no-decision after allowing just three hits and an earned run. The 23-year-old struck out 11 Travelers hitters and walked just one in the Missions 2-1 victory. Huber was acquired in the middle of last season from the San Diego Padres for Dave Hansen and ended his 2004 season with the Inland Empire 66ers.

Huber is now 1-1 with an even 4.00 ERA in five starts with the Missions. After the stellar seven-inning outing, Huber might have found the groove that could pave the way for solid season. The right-hander is capable of leading a staff and being the go-to guy, getting his team into the seventh and eighth inning each time he takes the ball. Look for good things from Jon Huber this season.


Honorable Mention

Mumba Rivera, RHP - Wisconsin
Rivera continues to pitch well, prompting many to see him as the first pitcher within the system to be promoted. The 24-year-old went seven solid frames, allowing one earned run on four hits in a Rattlers loss on May 3. But the Bethune-Cookman graduate backed that outing up with a 5.2 inning stint on May 8, allowing an earned run on four hits. In the 12.2 innings combined, Rivera walked just three batters and struck out nine. On the year, Rivera is 4-0 with a 2.60 ERA in six starts this season.

Craig James, RHP - Wisconsin
James remains unscored upon this season, going 2.1 innings this past week and allowing just one hit while striking out a batter. The right-hander's ERA stands at triple-zeroes after seven appearances covering 9.2 innings.

Keep An Eye On...

George Sherrill, LHP - Tacoma
Sherrill made four appearances this past week, totaling five innings. The southpaw allowed an earned run – his first in six appearances – on one hit. Sherrill racked up five strikeouts en route to picking up three saves. Sherrill now has five saves for the year, to go with his 2.45 ERA and 19 punchouts in just 14.2 innings.

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