Toledo MLN: Wrapping Up the Season

After months of ups-and-downs, the Toledo Mud Hens finally ended their season, doing so on a good note. After dropping its previous two games to Columbus, on the road, the Mud Hens won their last two games against the Clippers, both at home. The Hens finished 67-77, 21 games behind Columbus in the International League West standings.

Lack of power

A trend for much of the season was the Mud Hens' inability to hit for power. That continued to prove true in the last week of the regular season.

In the team's final five games, they hit only two home runs – coming in the last two games at home. They were hit by Clete Thomas, his 12th, and Ryan Strieby, who led the team with 19 this season.

On the season, the Mud Hens hit 108 home runs, good for 11th out of 14 teams in the International League.

Getting the job done

Called on midway through the season to jump into a starting role, Fu-Te Ni excelled for the Mud Hens.

He tossed 111 innings this season, by far a career high, splitting time in the bullpen and the rotation.

He switched to the rotation full time in early June, making 12 starts for the Mud Hens. His numbers as a starter were actually better than his numbers as a reliever. When he started the game, he posted a 2.76 ERA in 71 2/3 innings, with an opponent batting average of .234 and 52 strikeouts versus 16 walks.

As a reliever, he put up a 4.12 ERA in 39 1/3 innings, with an opponent batting average of .266 and 41 strikeouts, versus 18 walks.

"He really stepped up and was a player for us later in the season," said Toledo manager Phil Nevin.

Final week show

Timo Perez flew about as far under the radar as an ex-MLB player could during this season at Triple-A. He quietly produced for his team, and finished with a solid season.

He celebrated the final week by going 7-for-21 (.333) with two runs batted in.

For the season, Perez finished with a .304 batting average, his highest in American professional baseball since 2007, when he hit .309 with the Mud Hens. His six home runs were a career low, but his 50 RBI and 16 steals were the most he's had in a season since 2008.

Leader in the clubhouse

While he missed time in August with injury, Adam Wilk came back in the final week to make a couple of brief starts for the Mud Hens, which solidified his place among the team's leaders in wins, innings pitched and ERA.

He Mud Hens kept his pitch count down because of his recent injury. Because of this, his two starts combined for only 5 2/3 innings. In those, he allowed four runs – three earned – with eight hits and one walk, striking out seven.

"Just wanted to get back out there and finish the year strong," Wilk said. "I was able to mix my pitches well and do things that I wanted to do with the ball out there."

Wilk finished fifth on the team with 102 2/3 innings pitched, tied for second on the team in wins and sixth on the team in ERA, among pitchers with at least 20 innings pitched for the season.

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