Luis Jimenez, DH - Scouting Report
They say the dude can rake


Q.  Wow!  His first ML start after twelve years in the minors, four national Vote For Luis campaigns to date, and one phone call about a possible KFC endorsement.  How did he look?  

A.  Like a big league hitter.


Q.  Why has he NEVER been in the bigs?

A.  He was asked this question before the game.  He laughed heartily.  My weight, man.  I go 300 and it doesn't look too good.  It especially doesn't look too good for an athlete, a pro athlete, man.  So my weight has always been a wall blocking my career.

This got Dr. D -- who himself could definitely lose a pound or thirty -- to thinking.  Huh.  Luis believes that 30-40 lbs. stand before him and the logical culmination of his life's work, and yet he (and I) can't get the weight off.  Even with the stakes that high.  Are Hostess cupcakes more addictive than cocaine?

The dude's been raking.  For 12 years.  On the beach.  Wearing headphones.  Time to phone a friend, that friend being Jillian Michaels.


Q.  Do the pro's look at him as able to hit?

A.  Reading between the lines:  he's got tremendous street cred with the scouts.  Oh, Luis Jimenez would hit just fine in the bigs, say they.

You can't make the mistake of just translating his career minors numbers.  For one thing, there are lots of guys who jelled at 27, 28, 29.  Think Jack Cust.  But for another thing, some guys' numbers just don't drop off in the majors.  Jimenez' .300/.350/.475 might be stay right there in the bigs, or might drop off very little.

But it's a funny thing.  Suppose that Luis Jimenez actually were a super-slow Nick Swisher, that he'd hit .280/.340/.465 and lose you runs when out on the bases.  Would you want a slow Nick Swisher at DH?  Or is that just flat not good enough?

It's funny, but Luis Jimenez might hit for a 120 OPS+ in Safeco, be clearly the M's second-best hitter after Jaso, and yet ... you wouldn't want him.  It's odd, but it's part of the reason that Jimenez is a career minor leaguer.  Tough to break in as a DH if you aren't really exciting with the bat.  Being quietly productive - Raul Ibanez - might keep you there.  But Ibanez and Swisher and those guys offered some upside when they broke in.

Don't you think this is kind of a paradox?  If we think you might get us 7.0 runs per 27 outs, and wind up giving us 5.0 or 5.5, you can break in that way (Mike Carp). But if we know you're going to give us 5.0 or 5.5 and no more, then forget it...


Q.  What's the scouting report?

A.  Against RHP's Friday, he read the strike zone like John Jaso.  I mean, A.J. Griffin has 47 K's against 11 BB's, a real Billy Beane pitcher.  He teased Jimenez with several tempting pitches, and Jimenez carefully studied them, as relaxed as a day at the beach, then tossed his bat away and wandered down to first.  How can Jimenez possibly be so calm, first game after a 12-year wait?

Second AB, Jimenez cracked a line-shot single ... he's got an extreme KBIZLT swing, very flat plane, even more so than Kyle Seager.  But Jimenez is supposed to have real good pop and in fact on two occasions, swung so hard he almost snapped the bat in half through acceleration...  

He actually kind of looked like a poor man's Prince Fielder.  And the swing's built for Safeco.  The scouts aren't kidding; he looks like he'd be fine in the majors.


Q.  Cut Smoak, put Jimenez in there?

A.  ::shrug:: you tell me.  Jay-Z got some cheap production out of Russell Branyan for a little while.  Journeyman DH's are out there.  Jimenez is very possibly one of them.

Is that where the 2013 M's are at?






You'll remember that when I was in my "anybody but Smoak" stage (Wait! I'm still in that!) earlier this year, when Carp was dinged, I said lets give the job to Liddi or Cat or Jimenez, anybody but "Little Timber" Smoak.
Jimenez smashed some in AAA, let's roll him out there for a while and see what we have.
And can we just give up on Smoak this year? Man, not hitting Carp against lefties because we want to see more Smoak is just stupid. It's more stupid to hit Smoak against a righty, like last night.
Didn't see the game last night, but I can't believe that Jimenez can't do a bit better than .191-.260-.315. Oh wait, I forgot that Smoak's a changed guy after his Tacoma trip. Let's see, his .203-.291-.290 over the last 28 days, and his 2nd half split of .161-.246-.268 sure proves that. Maybe it's his .196-.258-.312 splt vL that we will just HAVE to get on the field because we don't want to let Carp hit against lefties. That must be it.
Was Carp dinged up last night? Does Wedge hate him? If that's the case, how about a bit of Liddi at 1B? I would rather see Kawasaki than one more inning of Smoak. RantRantRantRant!
We've got 25 games left. Bench Smoak. He doesn't see the field again, unless he PH's. Carp plays everyday at 1B.
Olivo never catches again. Never! No DHing ether. Jaso and Montero split the catching. Jimenez gets a bunch of DH duty, say 15 games. Jaso and Montero split the rest. Get Liddi on the field at 3B/LF.
Man, let's see.
But we don't need to see more Smoak or Olivo.
Make it so.

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