Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine
Five affiliates left 26 runners on (total) and scored 28 runs and went 4-1. The sixth, New Hampshire, did leave 12 runners on, but scored 9 runs.


Rochester 4 @ Syracuse 5

The Chiefs completed a comeback from a 4-1 deficit with a run in the 10th. Russ Adams singled and Ryan Roberts walked to open the frame. Ray Olmedo laid down a sacrifice bunt, and the Red Wing pitcher threw it away as the winning run scored. Earlier, Roberts and Chad Mottola had hit solo homers, while Olmedo doubled and scored. Mike MacDonald started and went 6.1 innings and allowed all 4 Rochester runs. Ryan Houston was brilliant in relief retiring all five batters he faced, three by strikeout.

Portland 2 @ New Hampshire 9

The Fisher Cats gained a measure of revenge for a string of defeats at the hands of the Sea Dogs with a 9-2 shellacking of Portland. Chip Cannon, Sergio Santos and Aaron Mathews homered to lead the parade, with Cannon adding a single and double and Santos a triple. Manny Mayorson went 3-4, including 2 doubles, with a walk at the top of the order. Yusaku Iriki gutted his way through 5 innings, allowing 2 runs on 11 baserunners. Seth Overbey earned the long save with 4 shutout innings of relief, including 2 strikeouts and 7 ground ball outs.

Dunedin 4 @ Brevard County 2

The D-Jays rallied for 3 runs in the 7th inning to overcome a 2-0 deficit, and added an insurance marker in the eighth. A Jacob Butler walk and singles by Carlo Cota and Chris Gutierrez loaded the bases with one out. Matt Gamel, who had homered earlier, made a key error which allowed two runs to score and a Luke Hetherington sacrifice fly finished off the frame. Orlando Trias went 6.1 innings and allowed both runs on 8 hits and 2 walks with 2 strikeouts. Aaron Tressler and Conor Falkenbach pitched well in relief to nail it down. Josh Kreuzer reached base in all four of his plate appearances.

Burlington 7 @ Lansing 5

Nathan Starner came out smoking for the Lugnuts, striking out the first 6 Bees he faced. He gave up solo homers in the 3rd and 4th innings, and then a couple of walks and a hit in the fifth, and he was gone. In the end, Starner surrended 4 earned runs in 4.1 innings on 4 hits and 3 walks with 7 strikeouts. The Lugnuts banged out 10 hits, with 2 apiece from Travis Snider, Yuber Rodriguez, Jonathan Baksh and Matt Liuzza, but no walks and no longballs meant that the offence was not as productive as it might have been.

Vermont 2 @ Auburn 9

Victor Santana and Adam Calderone hit 2 run shots to key a 10 hit Doubleday attack. The Doubledays managed to parlay 5 singles and a walk in the 5th inning into 5 runs to salt the game away. Efficient, eh? Calderone threw out Aaron (Doctor) Seuss, and added a sacrifice fly. Luis Perez started and went 4 innings, allowing both Vermont runs on 4 hits and 2 walks, while punching out 7. J.P. Arencibia went 1-5 on the evening.

GCL Jays 5 @ GCL Phillies 2

Yohermyn Chavez hit a 2 run homer to lead the Jays over the Phillies. Moises Sierra added a run-scoring double and Balbino Fuenmayor went 2-4. Brad Cuthbertson and Jason Monti each pitched four effective innings, allowing a run apiece. Cuthbertson walked three and struck out six, while Monti walked nobody and struck out three. You can call them Henke and Key if you like.

3 stars

3rd star- Manny Mayorson
2nd star- Ryan Roberts
1st star- Chip Cannon
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timpinder - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 10:20 AM EDT (#171742) #

Olmedo's now hitting .289 with a .349 OBP.  I've read here, from people who seem to me to be knowledgeable and good at evaluating talent, that his defense is very good.  Some have been adamant that he should be playing for the Jays right now.  Apparently Mike Wilner disagrees.  Last night he said, "Olmedo is horrible".  He then went on to say that the only thing Olmedo can do well is "run fast".

I don't know what to think.  His stats look fine for a defensive AAA shortstop, but I've never seen him play.  Where does Wilner get his information from? 

Mike Green - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 10:48 AM EDT (#171745) #
Horrible?

The man hits .280 with decent plate discipline, very good defence at short and speed. He's a switch-hitter.  He has very little power.  He is 26 years old. At this point, it is pretty clear that the overall package is at least a little better than McDonald or Clayton.  Right now, he is about where Omar Vizquel was at age 26.  The odds that Olmedo will develop into Omar Vizquel are long, but there's a lot better chance that Olmedo will improve a little and become a valuable everyday player.  There is very little chance of  McDonald or Clayton doing so at their ages and with their histories. What precisely does the club have to lose?

Maldoff - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 11:08 AM EDT (#171747) #
The one thing I've noticed recently is that you cannot trust the "opinion" of Wilner. He seems to be a guy who answers questions of fans with the team by-lines in mind. He never says anything that contradicts the Jays plans (i.e. the Thigpen move), and just tells the fans what JP wants them to hear from a "non-biased source".
BulletJayFan - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 11:12 AM EDT (#171748) #

Yeah, horrible is absolutely the wrong word to use. I had been a little skeptical of him because his singles-driven batting average seemed to fall rather quickly and with no real end in sight after a hot start (I could be wrong about that observation, since I didn't get to see the Chiefs for about the first month of the season, but I'm pretty sure that over the span of about a month I watched his batting average fall 50 points), but he has stopped the free fall and it looks like .290/.350 is where he'll end up. With excellent defense of course. Just by looking at him, I wouldn't say he runs that fast, since Wayne Lydon makes him look slow, but he did complain in the Syracuse Post-Standard the other day about the turf and how it affects his knees, so maybe that's the cause.

dan gordon - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#171752) #

Have a look at Olmedo's numbers over 4 years.  In '04 he hit .286 in AAA, in '05 he hit .276 in AAA, in '06 he hit .282 in AAA, in '07 he is hitting .289 in AAA.  Very consistent over 4 years, so I'd say he has established his level of ability and is unlikely to suddenly start to improve after staying the same for 4 years.  Olmedo has received several looks in the big leagues, and it is not pretty.  In 352 AB's, has hit for a .230 average and a .280 OBP with a SLG % of .293.  It looks quite unlikely to me that he is going to be a decent ML player.

For comparison, J. McD's career numbers including this year are .241/.279/.314.

Lefty - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 02:22 PM EDT (#171757) #
So other people are beginning to notice this too eh. I stopped listening to Wilner years ago except when he has Ricciardi on.  Frankly he is too rich for my blood.
Ryan Day - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 02:28 PM EDT (#171758) #

It looks quite unlikely to me that he is going to be a decent ML player.

That may be true. But I think it's even more unlikely that either Clayton or McDonald are going to turn into decent ML players this year. There's at least a chance Olmedo could be better.

Mike Green - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 03:28 PM EDT (#171762) #
dangordon,

Most of Olmedo's major league at-bats were at age 22.  He seems to have improved his plate discipline and contact rate since then (as many players do from their early 20s). He did have about 120 at-bats at age 24-25, but most of these were of the 1 per game variety.  That is not the ideal base from which to evaluate what a player is capable of doing at age 26-27. .280 in triple A with fairly good contact rate and good speed will ordinarily translate into about .250-.260 in MLB, depending on parks.


dan gordon - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 05:21 PM EDT (#171767) #

I'm not convinced that there would be any appreciable improvement from McDonald to Olmedo.  IF Olmedo hits .250 (and I doubt he would), that is 9 points higher than McDonald's career average, and lower than McDonald is hitting this year.  Neither one has any power.  Olmedo would walk more.  And by the way, Olmedo's walk rates haven't improved over the years.  He walked a fair bit in AA in 2002 (53 walks, the most he's had with one team in a season, and the highest walk rate he's had).  His walk rates in 2004 and 2006 were very consistent, and close to his walk rate this year as well.  I find it hard to believe Olmedo would be as good defensively as McDonald.  Either way, I think the difference is negligible.  The Blue Jays have a hole at SS and that seems to me to be the area where they can improve the most.  Olmedo might be 5 or 10% better or worse than J McD.  I think they NEED to do better than that.  I think they CAN do better than that.

Mike Green - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 05:26 PM EDT (#171770) #
Don't get me wrong.  I am not suggesting that the club ought to end its search for a solution to the shortstop problem with the promotion of Olmedo.  I am suggesting that it ought to begin that way. What is clear is that McDonald/Clayton is a poor solution for 2007, and an even worse one for 2008.  It is time to get working on a better one.  The promotion of Olmedo would be a first step. 
Thomas - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 05:45 PM EDT (#171772) #
One thing about Olmedo is that a high percentage of his hits are infield singles. At least, as of about six weeks into the season he was on a top 10 list for the entire minors. Most of the players on that list were in the low minors, as defence improves the higher the level one plays at and this decreases the number of infield singles. So, it wouldn't be a surprise if Olmedo lost a few of those hits against MLB infields, but on the positive side, he's already at Triple-A so there shouldn't be a huge fall. It's more of a knock against guys who are in the low minors and collect a lot of infield singles.
Rob - Thursday, July 19 2007 @ 10:45 PM EDT (#171776) #
Jeff Blair on Olmedo:

Id have kept Ray Olmedo because he plays better defence and his speed would be an asset, considering Matt Stairs is on the roster. You have to see Olmedo take infield practice. John Gibbons swears he doesn't catch the ball as much as guide it into his throwing hand. Softest hands I've seen of any player I've covered.

Who to believe, who to believe...
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