Mariner Squalls 02/11/14: Samardzija, Wolf, Miner

1024px-Ebenezer_Colls_-_Sailboats_in_a_squall== New Names Get Thrown on the Pile ==

Logan of Lookout Landing, also known as Thirteen of Two or just Thirteen (maybe there’s more iterations), citing Chicago info, floats the notion of a trade of Mariner minor-league pitching for Cub starter Jeff Samardzija.  Supposedly James Paxton, Victor Sanchez and Edwin Diaz would be among those sought (presumably — hopefully! — just one and not all).

So there’s a speculative name who would become a real part of the staff if acquired.

And then there are two real names who have only a speculative chance of making the team.

MLB veterans Randy Wolf and Zach Miner have signed minor-league deals with the proverbial invitation to spring training.

Here’s some quickie analysis.  For my quickie analysis, I go to the “ratio” box, which is on the “more stats” tab at baseball-reference.com.  The “MLB Average” lines will be slightly different because they are calculated for the years in which that player actually played.

Here’s Samardzija:

Year Age Tm Lg PA HR% SO% BB% XBH%
2008 23 CHC NL 124 0.0% 20.2% 12.1% 4.0%
2009 24 CHC NL 161 4.4% 13.0% 9.3% 11.8%
2010 25 CHC NL 100 4.0% 9.0% 20.0% 9.0%
2011 26 CHC NL 380 1.3% 22.9% 13.2% 5.3%
2012 27 CHC NL 723 2.8% 24.9% 7.8% 7.8%
2013 28 CHC NL 914 2.7% 23.4% 8.5% 7.9%
6 Yrs 2402 2.5% 22.3% 9.7% 7.5%
MLB Averages 2.6% 18.7% 8.4% 7.6%
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 2/11/2014.
***

As you can see, for his career Samardzija is very close to MLB-average at allowing HR and XBH, a bit below MLB-average at allowing walks and a bit above MLB-average at strikeouts.

All-in-all, it’s a very nice profile for a No. 3 starter.  I like that his K-rate actually went up a notch after he became a full-time starter, and you can also see that the reason the BB-rate is tad high is from his bullpen days.  Those last two seasons have been league-average at not allowing bad things, and somewhat above-average at creating good things (strikeouts).

It looks to me as if Samardzija’s 2013 wasn’t really any worse than his 2012, despite a bump in ERA (and xFIP seems to confirm as much), and he ought to be an above-average starter going forward.  Also, with only two years as a full-time starter, there might be less wear on his arm.

Is he worth an organizational-top-10 prospect?  Yes, but don’t make me pick which one.  It’s really hard to compare MLB-ready Paxton to the two teenagers, but I would probably be least upset about Paxton going.  (Just me.)  That being said, as benihana pointed out at SeattleSportsInsider.com, Paxton is the only LH slated for the 2014 rotation, and that’s a good reason to keep him.

===

Here’s Wolf:

Year Age Tm Lg PA HR% SO% BB% XBH%
1999 22 PHI NL 552 3.6% 21.0% 12.1% 9.4%
2000 23 PHI NL 889 2.8% 18.0% 9.3% 9.5%
2001 24 PHI NL 684 2.2% 22.2% 7.5% 8.2%
2002 25 PHI NL 855 2.7% 20.1% 7.4% 6.9%
2003 26 PHI NL 850 3.2% 20.8% 9.2% 8.8%
2004 27 PHI NL 585 3.4% 15.2% 6.2% 9.6%
2005 28 PHI NL 346 4.1% 17.6% 7.5% 10.4%
2006 29 PHI NL 261 5.0% 16.9% 12.6% 10.3%
2007 30 LAD NL 458 2.2% 20.5% 8.5% 8.3%
2008 31 TOT NL 823 2.6% 19.7% 8.6% 7.8%
2009 32 LAD NL 862 2.8% 18.6% 6.7% 7.5%
2010 33 MIL NL 936 3.1% 15.2% 9.3% 8.4%
2011 34 MIL NL 903 2.6% 14.8% 7.3% 7.9%
2012 35 TOT MLB 699 3.3% 14.9% 7.4% 10.2%
14 Yrs 9703 3.0% 18.2% 8.4% 8.6%
MLB Averages 2.7% 17.4% 8.6% 7.9%
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 2/11/2014.
***

He didn’t pitch in 2013, but you can see he spent 14 years as pretty much an Average Joe.  But you can see the negative-plateau-leap after 2009 in the K% column (red text), and he’s been below-average since then.

He’s a lefty who could absorb some innings, but nothing to get enthused about.

===

Here’s Miner:

Year Age Tm Lg PA HR% SO% BB% XBH%
2006 24 DET AL 398 2.8% 14.8% 8.0% 7.8%
2007 25 DET AL 232 1.3% 14.7% 9.5% 6.0%
2008 26 DET AL 509 2.0% 12.2% 9.0% 7.9%
2009 27 DET AL 409 2.7% 15.2% 11.0% 6.6%
2013 31 PHI NL 133 3.0% 15.0% 12.8% 6.8%
5 Yrs 1681 2.3% 14.1% 9.6% 7.2%
MLB Averages 2.6% 18.3% 8.4% 7.8%
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 2/11/2014.
***

He was a 4th-round pick in the 2000 draft and throws low-90s.  Woo-hoo!  Other than that, he walks way too many and doesn’t strike out nearly enough.  Is there something encouraging in his minor-league background?  Um, no.

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