You can find the game log for Roenis Elias here, and you can see that up until June 12 he would have three or four strong starts and then an ugly one. Which we all breezily wrote off, because that was the nature of his game: deception from crazy-seeming, never-know-what’s-coming-next improvisation. Sometimes he’d leave a lot of “hittable” balls up in the zone. Often he’d get away with it; sometimes he wouldn’t.
But starting on June 12, the polarity reversed. Now he’s having more ineffective starts than effective ones, including three bad ones in a row.
Starting from June 12, his ERA is 6.89 and his ISO-against is .200. He’s been getting rocked.
Let’s take a look at his strike zone chart from Wednesday night:
Let’s zoom in a bit and highlight the balls that were put in play for seven hits and one error:
There’s no question Elias saved the season (along with Chris Young), but is he running out of steam? or has the league caught up to him? or is he just going through a rough patch that he’ll bust out of?
A couple of days ago, I would have said that he’s a lock at least until James Paxton comes back, since there were no ready alternatives.
But now … are they grooming Tom Wilhelmsen to take his place? Certainly they have more right-handed relievers than they need. We’ve covered that. So the Barkeep in the rotation doesn’t seem so far-fetched.
The hitters were actually better on Wednesday, but their efforts didn’t produce more than one run. Not that it mattered.
- Baseball-reference.com boxscore here.
- Mariners affiliates scoreboard here.
- Does Justin Smoak count as a prospect again? Not at age-27. But he hit two homers in a losing effort for Tacoma. Salt Lake is at altitude, though, and it was hot with the wind blowing out, so it doesn’t necessarily translate to Safeco Field power.
- High-A High Desert was at Visalia, which is down in the valley (between Bakersfield and Fresno), not up in the desert, but they had a good old Cal League slugfest anyway, winning 13-12 despite six runs from the Rawhide in the bottom of the 9th. Jabari Henry, Tyler Smith and Travis Witherspoon all homered. It was the 17th for Henry. Witherspoon ended up with four hits and two steals.
- Catcher Christian Carmichael went 3-for-3 with a triple in Low-A Clinton’s loss.
- 2014 3rd-round pick Austin Cousino had a double and a home run for Short Season Everett. Cousino is at .266/.333/.415 with 12 steals (caught just once) in his first 23 pro games.
- Another 2014 pick, Hawtin Buchanan pitched two scoreless innings for the win. He’s yet to give up a run in his first three appearances.
- And yet another 2014 pick — 23rd-rounder Pat Peterson — had a strong start for Rookie-level Pulaski: 5.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 6 K. It turns out that Peterson’s twin brother Eric (drafted in the 37th round by Houston; also out of N.C. State) is also in the Appalachian League. Twins … but one is a lefty and one is a righty.