Archive for the ‘Weekly Updates’ Category
Its too early to read much into the first week’s performance in Spring Training games, but its hard not to notice that Darwin Barney has started hot. Barney went 3 for 5 in the first handful of games, with a home run, 2 RBIs and a run scored.
Figuring out where all those who played in the major leagues last year (as I detailed in yesterday’s post) have moved is relatively easy compared to figuring out what has happened to those who passed through the minors last year. This is true for several reasons:
- There are more places where they could have gone — including both foreign and independent leagues
- The minor league records online aren’t as accurate as the major league records
- Its early, and not all the decisions have been made about where players will be, and the final decisions depend on the results of spring training.
There are probably other reasons as well. I must admit that I’m not that experienced in pulling together this information — I’ve only been at this for a few years.
But, despite these problems, I have produced a list of Mormons in the minors, foreign leagues and independent leagues:
We are a week away from the first Spring Training baseball games, and most players have already reported. And as always happens during the off-season, many players have moved from one team to another as managers search for just the right combination of players, and players look for more money or better opportunities.
Of course, the Mormons in professional are no exception. Here is a rundown of the Mormons who played at least one game in the majors last year and where they are at the moment. Tomorrow I’ll give a rundown of those who only played in the minors last year.
After a stunning performance in the Red Sox’ division series against the Tampa Bay Rays that left him with a .500 2013 post-season batting average, Jacoby Ellsbury, along with his team mates, have been stopped cold by the Detroit Tigers’ pitching. After a 9 for 18 performance in 4 games against the Rays, Ellsbury is 0 for 6 in two games against the Tigers.
The division series’ have finished, and the number of Mormons in the playoffs is down to two. Jacoby Ellsbury of the Boston Red Sox and Doug Fister of the Detroit Tigers will both play in the American League Championship series, which begins on Saturday, and one of the two players will go on to face the National League champion in the World Series.
With the loss of the Pittsburgh Pirates to the St. Louis Cardinals last night, both Kyle Farnsworth and John Buck are out of post-season play. Not that their play has made much of a difference. The Pirates haven’t used Farnsworth at all, and had Buck substitute for catcher Russell Martin once — but Buck never got to the plate.
Just one game is left in the various division series, played tonight between the Oakland Athletics and the Detroit Tigers, who are tied 2-2 in their series. Both teams have Mormon players, although the Tigers’ starting pitcher Doug Fister is unlikely to make an appearance tonight.
Tiger’s starting pitcher Doug Fister struggled a little in the first two innings last night, giving up three hits and a run on a Jed Lowrie single. While Fister then settled down, he later gave up a 2-run home run to Lowrie in the 5th and was pulled after a scoreless 6th with the game tied. The Tigers later won the game 8-6.
No one is surprised, I suppose, that the Mormon athlete who performed best during the year is also best in the post season so far. Jacoby Ellsbury is nothing less than hot; hitting .571, scoring 6 runs and 2 rbis and swiping 3 bases in 3 games. The only question seems to be: can he keep it up?
Meanwhile, perhaps the most unlikely of the Mormons to start every game of the post-season, Elliot Johnson, will play no more, as the Atlanta Braves were eliminated last night by the Los Angeles Dodgers. Johnson’s performance wasn’t much help, he hit just .071 with 1 walk and 4 strike outs in four games and 14 at bats–worse than his regular season record by far.
Only one of three Mormon players on playoff teams in action last night stepped on the field, but neither of the two teams with Mormon players won, as the Los Angeles Dogers beat the Atlanta Braves 6-1 and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 9-1.
Elliot Johnson was the first Mormon player to take the field in this year’s playoffs, starting the game at second base for the Braves. But the speedy Johnson was 0-4 at the plate, including 3 strike outs, and never really got a chance to steal a base. Johnson will likely see much of the playing time in the NLDS, because the Braves have left Dan Uggla off the roster, probably because his performance at the plate this year has been poor.
The only playoff team with two Mormon players, the Pittsburgh Pirates, beat the Cincinnati Reds 6-2 last night to advance to a five-game series against the League-leading St. Louis Cardinals starting Thursday. However, neither of the two Mormon players, backup catcher John Buck and reliever Kyle Farnsworth, appeared in the game. As backup players they may appear late in any of the Pirates’ future playoff games. And the heroic’s of the Pirate’s starting catcher, Russell Martin, in last night’s game may make Buck’s appearance in the playoffs less likely.