Baseball BeatMay 26, 2006
Finally!
By Rich Lederer

Jered Weaver has been called up to the Los Angeles Angels and will make his long-awaited major-league debut Saturday night against the Baltimore Orioles.

According to the Orange County Register, Weaver will take Kevin Gregg's spot in the rotation. Ervin Santana, who was scheduled to start tomorrow night, will move up a day and work on his normal four days of rest. Gregg returns to the bullpen and Esteban Yan apparently will be released.

"Little Weaver," as he is known by his big league teammates, has a 4-1 record in nine starts for the Salt Lake Bees and is leading the Pacific Coast League with a 2.05 ERA, 66 strikeouts, and a 0.91 WHIP in 57 innings. The Angels #1 draft pick (12th overall) in the 2004 draft hasn't allowed a run over his last 27 1/3 innings, ironically matching the Salt Lake record set by Gregg in 2003.

Game Logs:

            IP   H   R   ER   BB   SO   BF   PIT   ST   BA   G   F
4/08 @ TUC   7   2   1    1    0    8   24    83   62   21   5   8
4/13 @ LV    5   9   4    4    0    6   23    91   63   28   1   7
4/19 vs TUC  6   5   0    0    2    6   25   102   64   38   3   8
4/24 @ POR   5   7   5    5    2    6   23    95   58   37   2   7
4/29 @ TAC   6   4   2    2    1   12   23    90   64   26   2   4
5/06 vs TAC  6   5   1    1    1    8   24   101   70   31   5   5
5/11 @ OMA   7   3   0    0    0    4   22    89   64   25   6  10
5/16 @ IA    6   4   0    0    2    8   24    96   62   34   3   7
5/22 vs NO   9   5   0    0    0    8   29   110   82   28  12   6
TOTALS      57  44  13   13    8   66  217   857  579  268  39  62 

The Golden Spikes Award winner as the nation's top collegiate player two years ago is coming off his finest performance as a professional. As shown above, the tall right-hander tossed a five-hit, complete-game shutout with eight strikeouts and no walks last Monday vs. New Orleans. Three-quarters of his pitches went for strikes and two-thirds of his non-K outs were generated on the ground.

Weaver faced major league hitters (including the World Champion Chicago White Sox, the entire Oakland A's starting lineup sans Frank Thomas, and the Barry Bonds-led San Francisco Giants) in the Cactus League two months ago and went 1-0 with a 1.02 ERA in five appearances. He didn't allow a single run in his three starts.

                IP   H   R   ER   BB   SO 
03/12 vs. CWS    4   2   0    0    2    2    -
03/17 vs. Oak    5   2   0    0    0    5    -
03/30 vs. SFG    5   2   0    0    1    4    W
TOTALS          14   6   0    0    3   11   1-0

Mixing apples and oranges here but adding up Weaver's last 12 appearances finds him with a 5-1 record and a 1.65 ERA (with 71 IP, 50 H, 13 R, 13 ER, 11 BB, and 77 SO). Those numbers work out to a 6.34 H/9, 9.76 K/9, and a 7:1 K/BB ratio.

I will be at the ballpark tomorrow night to take in Weaver's MLB debut. Rob McMillin and I were planning on watching Weaver on Saturday night. But we thought the occasion was going to take us to Las Vegas to catch the Bees and the 51s (the Dodgers Triple-A affiliate). Oh well, rather than driving nearly 300 miles to Vegas, it looks like I will be making the 15-20 mile trek to Anaheim.

Man, I hate when that happens!

* * * * *

For more on the Angels (including a couple of quotes from yours truly), be sure to check out Jon Weisman's fine article over at SI.com.

Comments

Yan has been DFA'd. At this point in his career, I wouldn't doubt that he actually accepts a deal to go down to the minors; the alternatives are probably some pitching-starved cellar-dweller.

Jered Weaver > Mark Prior.

"You can stick a fork in Erstad...Make him Director of Inspirational Activities, but don't let him wear eye black and get his uniform dirty any longer."
Rich you are the Dan Brown of baseball; deciphering the code of baseball minutia while making conclusions that shake the very foundation of faith of Angel fans. I cant tell you how close Ive gotten to provoking physical confrontations with otherwise mild mannered Angel fans for suggesting that Erstad could be the worst offensive first baseman in the Majors. Keep speaking truth to power.

ADAM - slight correction, Erstad's the worst offensive Centerfielder in the Majors.