Saturday, January 6, 2007

Ohlendorf Hating

Although he packs a very strong k/bb ratio, a mid 90s fastball and a supposedly Wang-like sinker there appears to be a lot of naysayers as far as Ohlendorf's ability to become a full-fledged top of the rotation starter.

To read what seems to be a truly "home-town" account of the Unit trade go visit the "Snakepit" and try not to laugh. This guy certainly lives and dies with his team - which is to be respected - but can you lay off of the DBack cool-aid a little bit? As a fan you are meant to support your team through thick and thin but seemingly downplaying former talent is unwarranted. Talk about disingenuous, you would think they had gotten Roy Halliday for Juan Samuel.

You can also visit the an ESPN attempt at a Mike Lupica column here. (ESPN Insider required) Just joking around, but Keith Law used to work for the Blue Jays front office. Ya think he might be drinking a little Yankee haterade?

Regardless of these stories and multiple reports of Ohlendorf as a C+ type prospect, the stockpile of talented arms cannot be denied. I have no doubt that a substantial trade will be generated by Cashman's ability to pry an Ohlendorf or an Humberto Sanchez away from miscreants like Unit or Sheffield.

As far as Steven Jackson, who did not have a stellar Arizona Fall League, here is his 2006 line at AA Tennessee. Jackson posted a 2.71 ERA through 24 starts; tossed 150 innings; gave up 131 hits; allowed only 6 homers; walked 45 and struck out 125. The 24 year-old also posted an impressive WHIP of about 1.17.

Definitely stop by the Diamondbacks' scout page on Jackson as it details his big-game pitching desire/ability as well as his role as the #1 starter for MLB pipeline Clemson. The article speaks to Jackson's inconsistency and the minor shoulder surgery needed while at college. However, the article continuously turns to Jackson's ability to perform under pressure.

The article's scouting report differs slightly (it was written 2005) from today's discussions of Jackson, as he is attributed with a low 90s fastball, above average curveball and a splitter "that's a middle infielder's dream, inducing ground balls and uncomfortable swings." The curveball has been upgraded to a demolishing slider which supposedly can become wild as times.

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