2005 Hagerstown Pitching Prospect Review

Matt Durkin's Walk Ratio Was Dreadful

Inside Pitch takes a look at the peripheral stats of the Hagerstown pitchers to find out what their strengths and weaknesses are as they continue to develop in the Mets' farm system. Though very early, we'll even handicap where these pitchers will be playing the 2006 season. Here are the pitchers that amassed at least 50 innings for the Hagerstown Suns and did not have more than 40 innings at a higher level.

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Charles Bowman - RHP

Originally drafted by the Texas Rangers in the 19th round of the 2003 MLB Draft and signed by the Mets in 2005, Bowman had owned a 5.81 career ERA prior to joining the Hagerstown bullpen. While the 2.98 ERA was very good, his peripherals numbers don't support that type of success. Opposing South Atlantic League batters hit .279 off of him and his WHIP ratio suggests his ERA should have been, and will be, higher. At 25 years old, Bowman's buried on the depth charts at the minor league level. Still, he earned a chance to improve his numbers with St. Lucie in 2006.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

2.98

1.40

54.1

2.98

4.97

0.66

.279



Rafael Cova - RHP

The Mets signed the Venezuelan native in 2004 after spending three seasons in international summer leagues. Cova, who possesses some of the nastiest stuff in the Mets' farm system, posted rather pedestrian numbers in his first taste of professional baseball in the United States. Of course, skipping the short-season leagues entirely, jumping right into the South Atlantic League, all while getting acclimated to a new country might be a lot to ask of a player in just one year. His strikeout ratio gives an indication of his stuff. His other numbers, while unspectacular, were solid with all things considered. Cova will be challenged in the Florida State League in 2006 where he could have a huge turnaround in his production.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

4.60

1.52

62.2

4.74

8.76

0.72

.261



Michael Devaney - RHP

Drafted in the 23rd round of the 2004 MLB Draft out of Condordia College, Devaney has posted some incredible numbers in the Mets' farm system. As a late round pick out of college, he's going to have to put together great numbers to get his shot and he's well on his way. His WHIP ratio was among the best on the Hagerstown staff. He had a solid walk ratio and a good strikeout ratio and his opponents batting average was third among the Suns' starters. Throw in the fact that lefties actually did worse against him than right-handed batters, there is a lot to like about Devaney's performance. He'll be a fixture in the St. Lucie rotation in 2006.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

3.88

1.15

137.0

3.35

7.95

0.59

.214



Matthew Durkin - RHP

Drafted in the 2nd round of the 2004 MLB Draft out of San Jose State University, Durkin had an interesting professional debut with the Hagerstown Suns in 2005. You know when you limit opposing batters to a pathetic .205 batting average but still allow nearly one and half base runners per inning pitched, something isn't right. The fact of the matter is, Durkin walked over six batters per nine innings pitched and what he did get hit, he usually got hit pretty hard. He averaged better than one home run allowed per nine innings pitched and over 37% of his hits allowed went for extra bases. Durkin will be looking for better results - despite the very good ERA this past season - as a member of the St. Lucie rotation next season.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

3.77

1.41

76.1

6.37

9.31

1.06

.205



Blake Eager - RHP

Drafted in the 30th round of the 2004 MLB Draft out of Metropolitan State College of Denver, Eager had a solid season in his first taste of long-season league baseball. His control was impeccable, posting the best walk ratio (among the starters) on the Hagerstown staff. While he walked less than one and half base runners per nine innings, the problem may have been he was in the strike zone too much. Opposing batters hit .261 off of him and like Durkin, Eager did get hit pretty hard. Nearly 35% of his hits allowed in the South Atlantic League this past season were extra-base hits, a number that is going to have to come down as he climbs the minor league ladder. Eager should join Durkin and Devaney in the St. Lucie rotation in 2006.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

3.76

1.19

105.1

1.37

7.09

1.11

.261



Jeff Landing - RHP

Drafted in the 12th round of the 2004 out of Virginia Tech, Landing posted very different numbers in his stops between Hagerstown and Brooklyn, which wasn't surprising at all. Many in the Mets' organization believe Landing is a much better pitcher than his numbers with Hagerstown showed and is more like the pitcher that put up great results in the NY-Penn League. His walk ratios were solid and he showed an ability to keep the ball in the ballpark. However, he'll still need to keep batters from hitting him as frequently as they did in 2005. Landing should see significant time with the St. Lucie Mets in 2006.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

4.40

1.43

75.2

4.04

5.35

0.83

.265

A

Brooklyn

2.87

1.24

84.2

2.87

6.27

0.32

.247



Kevin Mannix - RHP

Signed as an undrafted free agent out of the University of Miami in 2004, Mannix, a positional player in college, hasn't made the smoothest of transitions to the mound as a professional. He walked a few too many batters, got hit a little too frequently, and posted unspectacular numbers across the board. He struck out just eight more batters than he walked and when he got hit, he got hit hard. The 25-year old Mannix, despite the struggles in Hagerstown, should be in the St. Lucie bullpen in 2006. He does however appear to be a non-factor in prospect circles.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

5.36

1.61

85.2

4.20

5.04

1.05

.287



Marcelo Perez - RHP

Signed as an undrafted free agent out of the Dominican Republic, Perez is very much like Rafael Cova as a guy with great stuff but unimpressive results thus far. Like Durkin, Perez simply walks way too many batters to be successful. He walked nearly five batters per nine innings pitched. And while the .258 opponents' batting average wasn't stellar either, the fact that his ERA was only 3.79 shows just how good he was when had to be. Still, despite the great stuff, the 25-year old Perez is going to have put up some numbers in a hurry. He'll be in the St. Lucie bullpen in 2006 and he has the stuff to move up pretty quickly if he can match his ability with results.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

3.79

1.60

59.1

4.85

8.04

1.06

.258



Orlando Rengel - RHP

The Mets signed Rengel as an internationals free agent out of Venezuela back in 2001, Rengel had a rough go of it in the South Atlantic League this past season. While opposing batters hit .298 off of him overall, it wasn't nearly as bad as the .344 batting average he served up with runners in scoring position. He walked over four batters per nine innings and as often as he got hit, it wasn't too surprising that his WHIP ratio (walks + hits per innings pitched) was dreadful. Rengel is still just 22 years old, but until he can prove his worth in the long-season leagues, he doesn't project to be a factor. He's a strong bet to find his way back into the Hagerstown mix in 2006.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

4.97

1.64

54.1

4.14

7.62

0.83

.298

A

Brooklyn

3.51

1.29

25.2

3.16

7.71

0.35

.255



Jose Sanchez - RHP

Signed out of Venezuela back in 2002, Sanchez received a lot of attention after beginning the 2005 season 9-0 in his first ten starts. While the ERA and his WHIP ratio were quite solid, Sanchez seemingly used smoke and mirrors to disguise the fact he was getting hit hard early and often. In fact, opponents hit more than 100 points better off of him than they did Gaby Hernandez. His .282 opponents' batting average was easily the worst on the team and throw in the fact he allowed more than 35% of his hits for extra bases (he gave up 52 extra-base hits in 2005), it is actually quite remarkable he had the win totals he posted. Sanchez will look for better peripherals as a member of the St. Lucie rotation in 2006.

Level

Team

ERA

WHIP

IP

BB/9

K/9

HR/9

Avg.

A

Hagerstown

4.20

1.38

133.0

2.50

5.89

1.22

.282



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