Triple-A Leaderboards

With the minor league season past its midpoint, it’s time to start taking stock in accumulated statistics. This year, instead of presenting midseason classification all-star teams, we decided to mix it up and present leaders in important statistical categories.

Triple-A is up first in our survey of the four full-season levels. Stats are through games of June 28.

As usual, * signifies lefthanded batter/pitcher, and # is switch-hitter.

BATTERS

AVERAGE
Keppinger, Jeff, Louisville (IL), .358
# Tolbert, Matt, Rochester (IL), .348
* Schierholtz, Nate, Fresno (PCL), .347
* Fontenot, Mike, Iowa (PCL), .340
Barker, Sean, Colorado Springs (PCL), .335
* Watson, Brandon, Columbus (IL), .333
* Barton, Daric, Sacramento (PCL), .331
Evans, Terry, Salt Lake (PCL), .331
Francisco, Ben, Buffalo (IL), .329
Barmes, Clint, Colorado Springs (PCL), .328
* Gathright, Joey, Omaha (PCL), .328

Tolbert’s season is more remarkable considering he never hit better than .301 in a four-season career at Mississippi.

ON-BASE PERCENTAGE
* Gathright, Joey, Omaha (PCL), .450
* Hannahan, Jack, Toledo (IL), .443
de Caster, Yurendell, Indianapolis (IL), .426
# Botts, Jason, Oklahoma (PCL), .425
* Barton, Daric, Sacramento (PCL), .422
* Votto, Joey, Louisville (IL), .419
* Tracy, Andy, New Orleans (PCL), .417
Keppinger, Jeff, Louisville (IL), .413
* Burnham, Gary, Ottawa (IL), .412
Butler, Billy, Omaha (PCL), .412

Butler and Barton (both 21) are two of the younger players in all of Triple-A. Tracy is in his seventh season in Triple-A while de Caster was our Winter Player of the Year in 2005-2006.

SLUGGING PERCENTAGE
Jones, Mitch, Las Vegas (PCL), .697
* Ankiel, Rick, Memphis (PCL), .583
Balentien, Wladimir, Tacoma (PCL), .581
Hessman, Mike, Toledo (IL), .580
Duncan, Shelley, Scranton/W-B (IL), .576
Jones, Adam, Tacoma (PCL), .574
Evans, Terry, Salt Lake (PCL), .569
# Young, Delwyn, Las Vegas (PCL), .567
* Tracy, Andy, New Orleans (PCL), .563
Raburn, Ryan, Toledo (IL), .561

Tacoma’s youthful duo of Balentien and Adam Jones are chasing ex-pitcher Ankiel and Mitch Jones, who has left for the Japanese leagues. Raburn and Young are both converted second basemen whose bats have improved since leaving the infield behind.

HOME RUNS
Hessman, Mike, Toledo (IL), 23
* Brazell, Craig, Omaha (PCL), 22
* Ankiel, Rick, Memphis (PCL), 21
Pascucci, Val, Albuquerque (PCL), 20
Balentien, Wladimir, Tacoma (PCL), 19
Duncan, Shelley, Scranton/W-B (IL), 19
Jones, Mitch, Las Vegas (PCL), 19
* Laforest, Pete, Portland (PCL), 18
* Tracy, Andy, New Orleans (PCL), 18
Jones, Adam, Tacoma (PCL), 17
Seabol, Scott, Albuquerque (PCL), 17

Hessman has pushed his career total to 246 minor league home runs. One scout said Brazell, who has a career-high 29 home runs overall after starting in Double-A, was “seeing beach balls right now.”

DOUBLES
# Botts, Jason, Oklahoma (PCL), 29
# Young, Delwyn, Las Vegas (PCL), 29
* Perez, Timo, Toledo (IL), 28
* Moss, Brandon, Pawtucket (IL), 27
Stansberry, Craig, Portland (PCL), 27
* Barton, Daric, Sacramento (PCL), 25
* Burnham, Gary, Ottawa (IL), 23
* Carter, Chris, Tucson (PCL), 23
* Clement, Jeff, Tacoma (PCL), 23
D’Antona, Jamie, Tucson (PCL), 23
Evans, Terry, Salt Lake (PCL), 23
* Hoffpauir, Micah, Iowa (PCL), 23

This is my favorite list–switch-hitting modest prospects taking full advantage of the PCL.

STOLEN BASES
Davis, Rajai, Indianapolis (IL), 27
# Guzman, Freddy, Oklahoma (PCL), 23
* Owens, Jerry, Charlotte (IL), 23
* Morgan, Nyjer, Indianapolis (IL), 22
* Anderson, Josh, Round Rock (PCL), 21
* Ellsbury, Jacoby, Pawtucket (IL), 21
* Gathright, Joey, Omaha (PCL), 21
Abercrombie, Reggie, Albuquerque (PCL), 18
# Casilla, Alexi, Rochester (IL), 18
* Reed, Eric, Albuquerque (PCL), 18

Morgan has missed more than a month and yet remains in the mix for the Triple-A lead.

STRIKEOUTS
Hessman, Mike, Toledo (IL), 99
* Moss, Brandon, Pawtucket (IL), 85
Ruggiano, Justin, Durham (IL), 84
Shelton, Chris, Toledo (IL), 84
Herr, Aaron, Louisville (IL), 82
* LaHair, Bryan, Tacoma (PCL), 80
# Botts, Jason, Oklahoma (PCL), 79
Mohr, Dustan, Durham (IL), 79
* Melillo, Kevin, Sacramento (PCL), 78
# Conrad, Brooks, Round Rock (PCL), 76
* Griffin, John-Ford, Syracuse (IL), 76
Guzman, Joel, Durham (IL), 76

Three Bulls in the Top 10 help explain why Durham leads the IL in strikeouts by a healthy margin.

PITCHERS

ERA
Slowey, Kevin, Rochester (IL), 1.54
Wood, Mike, Oklahoma (PCL), 2.44
Sonnanstine, Andy, Durham (IL), 2.66
Van Benschoten, John, Indianapolis (IL), 2.73
Gallardo, Yovani, Nashville (PCL), 2.90
Bell, Rob, Norfolk (IL), 2.97
* Gosling, Mike, Louisville (IL), 3.00
Floyd, Gavin, Charlotte (IL), 3.07
* Birkins, Kurt, Norfolk (IL), 3.18
Broadway, Lance, Charlotte (IL), 3.24
* Gabbard, Kason, Pawtucket (IL), 3.24

Broadway is the only Triple-A ERA leader who has yet to see the major leagues.

WINS
Bullington, Bryan, Indianapolis (IL), 9
Redding, Tim, Columbus (IL), 9
Gallardo, Yovani, Nashville (PCL), 8
Humber, Philip, New Orleans (PCL), 8
* Jackson, Zach, Nashville (PCL), 8
Niemann, Jeff, Durham (IL), 8
* Walrond, Les, Iowa (PCL), 8

Redding ranks second in the Nats organization to John Lannan in wins; Jason Simontacchi leads the big league club with five.

INNINGS PITCHED
Olenberger, Kasey, Salt Lake (PCL), 108
Campillo, Jorge, Tacoma (PCL), 102 2/3
* Olson, Garrett, Norfolk (IL), 97
* Phillips, Heath, Charlotte (IL), 96 2/3
Gutierrez, Juan, Round Rock (PCL), 96 1/3
* Walrond, Les, Iowa (PCL), 96 1/3
* George, Chris, Albuquerque (PCL), 95 2/3
Garza, Matt, Rochester (IL), 92
Komine, Shane, Sacramento (PCL), 92
Chiavacci, Ron, Toledo (IL), 91 1/3
Dillard, Tim, Nashville (PCL), 91 1/3
Lehr, Justin, Tacoma (PCL), 91 1/3

Olenberger, 29, signed with Solano of the independent Western League in 2000 out of Long Beach State and has become a reliable Triple-A arm for the Angels.

STRIKEOUTS
Gallardo, Yovani, Nashville (PCL), 110
Garza, Matt, Rochester (IL), 95
Oxspring, Chris, Nashville (PCL), 93
Niemann, Jeff, Durham (IL), 85
* Olson, Garrett, Norfolk (IL), 84
Vasquez, Virgil, Toledo (IL), 83
Haeger, Charlie, Charlotte (IL), 78
Hansack, Devern, Pawtucket (IL), 76
Chiavacci, Ron, Toledo (IL), 75
Hammel, Jason, Durham (IL), 75
Kinney, Matt, Fresno (PCL), 75

Oxspring, 30, is back in the U.S. after a year in Japan.

STARTER SO/9
Gallardo, Yovani, Nashville (PCL), 12.75
Oxspring, Chris, Nashville (PCL), 9.81
* Happ, J.A., Ottawa (IL), 9.62
Garza, Matt, Rochester (IL), 9.29
Hammel, Jason, Durham (IL), 8.84
Vasquez, Virgil, Toledo (IL), 8.79
Hansack, Devern, Pawtucket (IL), 8.73
Niemann, Jeff, Durham (IL), 8.63
* Saunders, Joe, Salt Lake (PCL), 8.41
Sonnanstine, Andy, Durham (IL), 8.37

Happ, in his first Triple-A season, earned his first big league callup this weekend, leaving Niemann as the only one on this list not to pitch in the big leagues.

RELIEVER SO/9
* Randolph, Stephen, Round Rock (PCL), 14.80
Schroder, Chris, Columbus (IL), 12.27
Booker, Chris, Columbus (IL), 11.42
Peguero, Jailen, Tucson (PCL), 11.18
Brown, Andrew, Portland (PCL), 10.85
* Rowland-Smith, Ryan, Tacoma (PCL), 10.66
* Breslow, Craig, Pawtucket (IL), 10.62
Doyne, Cory, Norfolk (IL), 10.60
Britton, Chris, Scranton/W-B (IL), 10.50
Hull, Eric, Las Vegas (PCL), 10.40

Peguero, 26, is in his first season with the Diamondbacks after seven seasons in the Astros organization.

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