Thursday, June 25, 2015

Second Half A New Beginning, What to Look For



The Biscuits will take the field Thursday as a different team.

Not only are there roster changes, we welcome Jacob Faria and Jake Bauers, but we also see the new Biscuit who made his debut on the road - Dayron Varona.

Add to that the return of Braden Hagens, Leonardo Reginatto and Kyle Winkler from their trip to Durham.


RESTOCKING FEE
The recent flush of players puts the Montgomery roster at a whopping 28 guys! Somebody will have to go somewhere before gametime on Thirsty Thursday, but its anyone guess who and where.

It could be a promotion, or demotion, a trip to the DL or an outright release. A trade is possible, but probably not likely - any trade the first place Rays make likely would not be one that helped us.


SPIN THE WHEEL

If I had to choose a pitcher for a move, I think it might be a promotion for Reavis, Stowell or Markel. Even Lollis and Sappington have been throwing the ball well, which could be enough to get a look at a higher level.


Powell to Seitzer, 4-3 PO
Since neither Hagens or Winkler impressed at triple-A, perhaps another hurler gets the chance. Stowell and Reavis get alot of strikeouts, Reavis and Hagens have been getting alot of hitters to swing and miss, so any of those guys could win a chance to pitch in Durham.

A position player could be in line for a promotion, possibly one of the Biscuits All-Stars - Field, Powell or Goedell. Even steady fielding Cam Seitzer could be due a trip to triple-A.

Also its possible that a player could be demoted, perhaps an infielder like Hector Guevara could be sent back down. 
2013 Hector Guevara, 1st Biscuits at bat, HBP in the head


GOING UP?
Durham has 13 pitchers on the roster, plus a few DL guys and rehabber Matt Moore.

The Bulls list four OF guys, a pair of catchers and a full compliment of infielders. There isn't much room at triple-A, barring an roster move.



GOING DOWN?
Port Charlotte, however, has a little room in the pitching staff with just 11 men active. Could Colton Reavis' terrible ERA get him sent down?

Tim Beckham is rehabbing with the StoneCrabs, once he moves on the Crabs will have only four infielders, and two are third basemen. Could Patrick Leonards slow start have earned him a demotion?

It will be interesting to see which players move where. It can be an indicator as to what stats or benchmarks the parent club is looking at for player movement.




JOHNNY FIELD JR
The next up in our two-part look at impact players, Field was second in the home run derby on Tuesday. When I asked him what his strategy for the derby was the answer was "Swing hard!"

And swing hard he does, indeed. Johnny makes some good contact, but he does strike out. Currently third in the futile stat on the Biscuits team. 

When he does make contact, good things happen. He is a little more likely to hit the ball on the ground, but his groundball-flyball ratio is just 68-52. Toss in 51 line drives and just say he makes good contact.


The heat map tells the story, Johnny likes to pull the ball to the left side. He leads the team in wOBA, a fine all round stat that tells us he is the most valuable Biscuit in terms of scoring runs.

Also tops in OPS for the Skitz, Johnny sees second base just about as much as anyone on the Montgomery roster has this year.

Lefties have no advantage over Johnny Field, Nine times he has take a free pass from a lefthander, only eight times has he singled against portside pitching. Batting over .330 vs southpaws in 36 at bats this year, Fields flashes his power with three homers and a pair of doubles.

JFJr has ownage on DJ Baxendale of Chattanooga - with six hits in nine plate appearances, three doubles and a home run.

Johnny Baseball is just 8for11 in stolen bases, but he looks to have much better speed than that stat shows. His defense has been stellar with his range benefiting from his speed perhaps more than the basepaths.  

BAD DAY AT BLACK ROCK RIVERWALK

On May 26th, Johnny struck out FIVE times in a single game! Tough day at the office!

However, other than the 5K game, Field has only two other games with more than two punchouts. (it was a road game, not riverwalk, but it sounded better than Bad Day at Generals Park!)




HIGH FIVE, BISCUITS!
A "good job" should be given to the Biscuits, who hosted a very classy All Star gala. I think everyone was impressed with the fine work, a great crowd came out to support the Biscuits and Riverwalk stadium. Everyone was treated to a fine time, I expect to put together a better post about it - once I work on the bazillion pics I took!


WHAT TO LOOK FOR
The second half starts the same as the first half, with high hopes and a homestand vs the Chattanooga Lookouts. Its a tough team to face, but the Biscuits know themselves much better now.
Adam Brett Walker II

Although without Buxton, the Twins affiliate is still well stocked with talent, including Home Run Derby winner Adam Brett Walker. Walker leads the league in round trippers and strikeouts. Look for Walker to continue to swing for the fences and likely connect some and whiff more.

Look for third baseman Miguel Sano to continue his good defensive play. He is much slicker than one would think of a guy as big as he is.

Look for a better Biscuits bullpen than in the first half, the recent changes offer much protection for late leads.

Look for solid starting pitching from the home team. The Snell-Schultz-Mortensen rotation is about as good as any in the league.
Biscuits All-Star starting rotation, Snell Schultz Mortensen

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