Adam Jones, CF
4 G, 12 AB, H, 3B, 0 RBI, 3 R, .083/.154/.250, BB, 2 K
The 20-year-old Jones has a full plate in the desert as he attempts the transition to center field, and looks to advance his bat another step. But nothing has gone very well for the M's top all-around prospect thus far.
Jones has struggled at the plate in 13 plate appearances, as evidenced by his one hit in 12 at-bats and two strikeouts, and has committed three errors in center field. Two of the miscues are of the fielding type, one a missed catch, another a misplay on a ground ball.
It is early, however, and the former first round pick is playing against the top competition in all of minor league baseball. There is plenty of time for Jones to get things rolling.
Jeff Clement, C
4 G, 12 AB, 5 H, 2B, HR, 3 RBI, 2 R, .417/.462/.750, BB, 3 K
Clement is holding his own with the best offensive prospects in baseball as he splits time at catcher and DH. The 22-year-old's defensive progress is measured best by overall experience, but his bat is taking care of itself – among Peoria Javelinas leaders in all categories.
The AFL is a great test for Clement, and a perfect way to evaluate his offensive prowess as he faces the better pitchers in the minor leagues. His time in the Northwest and Midwest League's didn't prove anything other than that the USC product had the necessary skills to succeed. A strong showing in Arizona would be further proof that Clement can put those skills into big time performance against top competition.
Clint Nageotte, RHP
1 GS, 3 IP, H, 0 ER, K, 0 BB, 6/2 G/F, 0.00 ERA, .100 BAA, 0.33 WHIP
Nageotte has made just one appearance thus far, a starting gig on day three that turned out to be as solid as the M's could have hoped.
After missing a month with a sore lower back, Nageotte went three shutout frames allowing just one hit. The 24-year-old fanned a batter, did not issue a base on balls and induced six ground ball outs – a continuation of his 2.65 G/F ratio during the year with Triple-A Tacoma.
Nageotte's new two-seam attack is allowing him to get outs earlier in the count as he stays away from big innings and high pitch counts. So far, so good.
Gary Harris, OF
4 G, 9 AB, 2 H, 2B, 0 RBI, 2 R, .222/.300/.333, 0 BB, 2 K, SB
Harris, the late addition to the M's AFL squad, is also off to a bit of a slow start, but the sample size is small and Harris' value to the M's still remains as a fourth outfielder, at best.
Mike Flannery, RHP
2 G, 2 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, K, 2 BB, 9.00 ERA, .500 BAA, 23.50 WHIP
Statistically, Flannery and fellow M's pitcher Chris Buglovsky aren't going to look too nifty this AFL season. Flannery, the right-hander picked up in the Ron Villone trade with the Florida Marlins, has had a tough go of it in his first two appearances.
The M's believe he can be a useful short reliever with his low 90s heater, solid slider and developing change-up. Flannery has thrown a lot of sliders and change-ups thus far in Arizona.
Chris Buglovsky, RHP
2 G, 2 IP, 8 H, 7 ER, 0 K, 0 BB, 31.50 ERA, .571 BAA, 40.25 WHIP
Buglovsky had one so-so outing and one horrific experience in another, allowing six earned runs on six hits in on frame. The inning included a three-run home run by Brandon Wood, his third in the AFL.
Bugs' future in the system probably lies in Triple-A Tacoma, where he can be used effectively as a starter or reliever. The Mariners would like him to develop an out pitch so he can be used later in games as a short reliever.
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