As I’m doing with some 2010 projections, I wanted to try something a little bit different with prospects. I’ll do some quick reports, giving you the player’s 2009 statistics, some background information and my 2010 outlook on him. Please let me know if you like the format and if it is something you would like to continue seeing here. To debut the column, we’ll look at the Orioles Jake Arrieta.
2009 Statistics between Double-A (59.0 innings) and Triple-A (91.2 innings):
148 Strikeouts (8.87 K/9)
56 Walks (3.36 BB/9)
What you need to know:
- 2007 Fifth Round Draft Pick
- His fastball sits between 92-94 and also throws a slider (“plus at times”) and changeup (“solid but needs the most improvement”), according to Baseball America. They also say he, “occasionally throws a curve to lefthanded hitters”. According to mlb.com prior to 2009, his fastball touched 97 mph (which is a significant improvement from when he was drafted, as he was said to be sitting in the 88-91 range at that point).
- His strikeouts declined from a 10.68 K/9 at Double-A to a 7.66 at Triple-A. A decline is not unexpected, though you would hope he comes out with something to prove early in 2010.
- His BABIP was slightly inflated at Triple-A, at .328, which helped to lead to a 1.41 WHIP and 3.93 ERA. With better luck should bring significantly better results.
- When asked if he considered himself “a strikeout guy, a guy who pitches to contact, or a mixture of the two” in an interview with Jay LeBlanc of The Washington Times in 2008 (click here to view), Arrieta said, “It really depends on the day. Some days I’ll have my best stuff, and I’ll strike a ton of guys out that day. Another day, I’ll pitch to contact just because I don’t have my best stuff, but I can still get outs. It really depends on the day, but overall I think I’m more of a strikeout pitcher.”
He will likely open the season at Triple-A, but there is little doubt that he will get an opportunity in the Major Leagues at some point, joining Brian Matusz and Chris Tillman. He’s certainly worth eyeing, though I would expect significant inconsistency and a potential innings limit to put a major damper on his value, especially pitching in the AL East. He could be usable, but he’ll be a much better option in 2011.
What are your thoughts on Arrieta? Can he make a fantasy impact in 2010?
You can read other recent Prospect Reports including: