Golly Gee, Weav
Overheard in Simi Valley this morning:
"Well, hello Mrs. Weaver, and how is young Jered today?"
"Why Eddie, he's doing just fine. Thank you."
After last night's performance, Mrs. Weaver might be understating just how well the li'l squirt is doin'. Her son Jered threw seven innings of scoreless ball against the Inland Empire 66ers on Thursday, allowing just one hit and two walks while striking out ten. Weaver was credited with his fourth victory of the season as the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes edged their California League rivals, 1-0.
Jered struck out the first four batters while fanning ten or more for the second straight game. Over his last four starts, Weaver has thrown 23 2/3 innings, allowing 9 hits, 6 runs (4 earned), and 4 walks, while striking out 36. Yes, 36 Ks in less than 24 innings. You don't need to be a math major to figure out that Weaver has been whiffing Class-A batters at a rate of 1.5 per inning during July.
IP H R ER BB SO
6/20/05 3.0 3 1 1 2 4 --
6/25/05 2.1 5 4 4 0 5 (L, 0-1)
6/30/05 4.0 8 7 5 1 4 --
7/05/05 5.0 2 2 0 0 7 (W, 1-1)
7/11/05 5.2 3 3 3 1 8 (W, 2-1)
7/16/05 6.0 3 1 1 1 11 (W, 3-1)
7/21/05 7.0 1 0 0 2 10 (W, 4-1)
Totals 33.0 25 18 14 7 49
H/9 SO/9 BB/9 K/BB HR/9 WHIP ERA
6.82 13.36 1.91 7.00 0.82 0.97 3.82
If you can look past that ERA (which actually is much more respectable than it was at the end of June), it is pretty easy to see just how dominating Weaver has been thus far. Including his two poor outings, Weaver is once again putting up numbers like he did in college in 2003-2004 when he was a two-time first team All-American at Long Beach State.
In fact, Weaver is pitching so well I fully expect that the Angels will promote him to Double-A Arkansas before the month is out as predicted after his last start on Saturday. I'm now going to up the stakes and say that Weaver will wind up in Anaheim before the year is out. Yup, I see him leapfrogging Triple-A, passing go, and collecting
$200 four million dollars before the year is out. Heck, Weaver could find himself pitching against the A's in Oakland or the Rangers in Texas during the last week of September and the first weekend of October.
Unlike in 2004 when he pitched 144 innings for the Dirtbags, Weaver's arm is fresh this year. He has completed his so-called spring training during the summer and has nothing left to prove with the Angels' High Class-A affiliate. I'll be surprised if he's not pitching for the Arkansas Travelers by the beginning of August. A month in Little Rock anywhere close to his last month in Rancho Cucamonga and the Angels will undoubtedly call him up when the rosters expand in September.
Three months ago when the Dodgers were riding high at 12-2 and the 2004 College Player of the Year was laying low as an unsigned first round draft pick from the previous June, who'da thunk that Jered--and not older brother Jeff--would be the more likely one to wind up pitching during the pennant race THIS year? Although it is far from a done deal, I think the odds are now approaching 50-50 that Weaver is assigned a Los Angeles Angels jersey with 34 on the back. Why not? The guy can flat out pitch and nobody else on the team is wearing that number.
Just as "Leave it to Beaver" brought to television viewers an image of late 1950s/early 1960s suburban prosperity and stability, Weaver has the potential of bringing both to a ballclub situated in the Big OC for many, many years to come. For the sake of Angels fans, let's just hope Jered continues to mature--something Theodore never seemed to do.