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The D-Jays finished the first half in second place behind the Lakeland Tigers, and started the second half well.

Dunedin's hitters

In the May review, I suggested that the highlight of June in Dunedin was likely to be the return of Dustin McGowan. Wrong-o. Not that Dustin's return was uninteresting, but it was overshadowed by the arrival in Dunedin of Chip Cannon. After leaving Lansing on a high, Cannon simply kept on hitting at a Ruthian pace in Dunedin, and has not stopped. At the same time, Eric Arnold, who had been hitting well, picked up the pace in June, giving the baby Jays formidable punch in the 3-4 slots in the lineup. Adam Lind cooled off in June, but if he should get hot, watch out. At the top of the lineup, Jayce Tingler and Carlo Cota have been getting on base with regularity. It's quite an offence, although a little light at the bottom of the order.

In early July, Chip Cannon travelled north to New Hampshire, while Vito Chiaravallotti travelled south to Dunedin. Early indications are that the bats will continue to boom.

The prospects

Chip Cannon-23.6 years old, .384/.465/.830

His skills are pretty much known at this point. He's got excellent to superior power and he will take a walk. He will strike out 150-180 times a season. He has below average mobility, but he catches the ball well at first. He is a classic 50's-70's first baseman. I do believe that there will be some Toronto chapters in his book.

Adam Lind-21.9 years old, .288/.351/.404

It's been an uneven season for Lind thus far. He did skip a level and he is young, so expecting improvements would be a little much. But, he has lost some power and plate discipline (30 walks, 51 strikeouts in half a season) over his past performance. He has been playing left field, but he is stretched there defensively. He will start next season in double A, but whether it will be in left field or first base remains to be seen.

Robinson Diaz- 21.7 years old, .273/.310/.348

Diaz has continued in almost exactly the same vein as last year. He's a good contact hitter, with little power and does not like to walk. Imagine a young Manny Sanguillen. His receiving and throwing skills are apparently at least average.

Dunedin's pitching

There have been plenty of comings and goings in the Dunedin rotation. Zach Jackson is in New Hampshire. Dustin McGowan had a number of starts in Dunedin in June, and then was promoted to New Hampshire. Casey Janssen continued his superb pitching in Dunedin and was promoted to New Hampshire in early July. Kyle Yates was promoted from Lansing to Dunedin and has pitched well. Remaining are David Purcey, Kurt Isenberg, and Mike MacDonald. Davis Romero has been the swingman, and made several starts for the Jays.

In the bullpen, Tracy Thorpe pitched very well and was promoted to New Hampshire. Brian Reed, Danny Hill, Mark Sopko, Eddie Cannon, Brad Mumma, Justin James and Milton Tavarez all saw significant work. None pitched exceptionally well; none pitched poorly.

The Prospects

Dustin McGowan-23.3 years old, 21 IP, 2 HR, 5 W, 20K

Dustin McGowan's rehab stint in Dunedin was a success. He's throwing low-mid 90s fastballs with good command. His command of his breaking stuff so far is not what it was before his injury, but he is throwing all his pitches without pain apparently. He'll get 15 starts in double A this year, and it certainly would not be a surprise to see him in the rotation in Toronto at some point next year, all things going well.

David Purcey-23.2 years old, 79 IP, 8 HR, 48W, 98K

Purcey's got excellent stuff, but as you can see, command is the issue. He's done very well at the start of games, but had a lot of trouble in the 4th and 5th innings. His line in the first 3 innings of his last 7 starts is 21IP, 1 HR, 8W, 33K. Is his long-term future as a relief ace?

Casey Janssen-23.8 years old, 59.2IP, 2HR, 12W, 51K

Janssen is a control pitcher in the Bush/Banks/Marcum mould, but does not quite have their stuff. His K rate has been good, but consistently lower than theirs. All of them have a chance to succeed, but no more than 2 will. Watching pitchers develop is like watching a painter work on a piece; you just never know what will come out at the end.

Kurt Isenberg-23.6 years old, 91IP, 10 HR, 23W, 62K

Notice how all the Dunedin pitching prospects are 23 years old. That's neither old nor young for the FSL. After a hot start, Isenberg has faded. He's got good control, and he's a lefty, so there is still a chance for him in the pen.

Davis Romero-22.3 years old, 64.2IP, 7 HR, 20W, 77K

One of my favourites, but at this point unlikely to be in the organization in 2006 due to his minor league service time and the competition for spots on the 40 man roster. He has posted consistently good K/IP and K/W ratios throughout his minor league career, and he is a young lefty. His arm has been healthy despite his slight stature, with wise management from the Jay organization probably helping in this regard. It would be a shame if the organization did not reap the benefit.

After a second-place finish in the first half, the D-Jays are off to a good start towards a second-half title, and their 4th playoff appearance in a row.

Dunedin June Review | 5 comments | Create New Account
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Jordan - Tuesday, July 12 2005 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#122336) #
Davis Romero is left-handed, he's 22, and he has 444 strikeouts in 345 minor-league innings (A-Ball and lower). Never mind his size or his usage, if there's any way the Jays can plug him into the 40-man for at least a year, I think they really have to.
Nigel - Tuesday, July 12 2005 @ 03:26 PM EDT (#122352) #
Jordan, I agree completely about Romero. His profile fits well for a Rule 5 selection (see Sisco, Andy). He can be slotted into the back end of a MLB bullpen as a second or third lefty for a year. If he thrives then he stays up. If he struggles, he's still young enough to send back to AA or AAA for a time. I'd be really suprised if he went unclaimed if he was left off the 40-man.
MatO - Tuesday, July 12 2005 @ 04:16 PM EDT (#122360) #
The difference is that Sisco is like a foot taller than Romero and teams in general like their pitchers tall. I'm not sure how hot a rule 5 candidate he would be considering his size, mediocre ERA and H/IP ratio so that maybe he would sneak through.
PeterG - Tuesday, July 12 2005 @ 07:10 PM EDT (#122382) #
I have to agree with MatO. There is no way Romero can make the Jays 40 man and I would be extremely surprised if he was claimed. IF there is any fear on part of management that he might be claimed, then they should seek to add him on as an additional enticement in a trade.
Mike Green - Tuesday, July 12 2005 @ 09:46 PM EDT (#122408) #
Purcey continued the pattern today. In the first 3 (no-hit) innings, he walked only 1 and struck out 2. He started losing his control in the 4th-6th again. Danny Hill vultured the win from him.
Dunedin June Review | 5 comments | Create New Account
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