== Zunino, not Zduriencik ==
We’ve gotten used to Zunino near the bottom of the order, and not drawing any walks (he has one), and basically filling a “Miguel Olivo-with-better-defense” function (as in: keep hoping for that next random blast).
But that’s led us to forget what we’ve seen from him before:
- Zunino 2012 OBP: .447 with 58 hits and 23 walks in 44 games
And don’t forget:
- Miller 2012 OBP: .410 with 186 hits and 74 walks in 137 games
- Miller 2013 OBP: .399 with 82 hits and 35 walks in 68 games
- Almonte 2013 OBP: .394 with 132 hits and 67 walks in 123 games
Now, we know that minor-league results won’t transfer directly to the majors, particularly for guys who are rushed into bigger roles, but these three don’t need to be making outs more than 70% of the time (all three have OBP starting with “2”).
Since it seems that maybe the Epic 11-Pitch At-Bat Home Run was a turning point for Seager, maybe the Yankee Stadium Challenge will be a turning point for Zunino.
Click on box, then play video.
That out-turned-single ended up being the key to the four-run 5th inning, which also included an Almonte single, a Cano RBI (on a ground-out to first) and a Corey Hart double.
- Hart is back near his career averages in most categories except BABIP (which is .259) — meaning he’s a formidable hitter in the middle of the order.
In the 7th came another rally, initiated by a Cano single and propelled by more singles from Dustin Ackley, Seager and Zunino.
The big catcher ended up with four singles in five trips to the plate. BABIP good fortune though it may be, it still might remind Zunino of how much more valuable reaching base is compared to an out.
Pencil vs. Scotch Watch:
We put our money on Pencil (Almonte at or near top of the order) over Scotch (Almonte sitting or near bottom of the order), and we were right. Pencil has the power in this relationship.
And Almonte did strike out three times.
But his bunt single was an important part of the 5th inning rally. Of course, we haven’t objected to Almonte on the field, we’ve objected to him leading the team in plate appearances.
Chris Young: 5.2 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 3 K
Brooks reports he had zero swing-and-miss pitches, but it also reports that he had five pitches up and in the zone that resulted in … popups. Those are the purple squares.
So he’s inducing weak contact often enough to survive, and that kept his team in position to win. That’s all you can ask from a back-of-the-rotation guy.
- With rainouts and off days, there were only two games.
- Tacoma routed Sacramento behind two home runs from … Ty Kelly. His first two of the year.
- That got the win for Andrew Carraway, who threw six scoreless innings.
- D.J. Peterson finally returned to the High Desert lineup (first time since April 21), and he did it in style — with his second home run. He was the DH.
- Jabari Henry stayed hot with a double and a single. He’s hitting .263/.404/.737.