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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Scouting Report Jonathan Sanchez

This 28 year old left-hander was drafted in the 27th round of the 2004 draft by the Giants out of Ohio Dominican University, thinking that they could fix his mechanics. He dominated minor league hitters from the start, striking out close to 12 per 9 innings. He climbed up the prospect rankings, peaking at #2 on baseball america's list before the 2007 season. He continued to get the strike-outs once he got to the majors (9.28 K/9 for his career), but he has also walked > 4.5/9. He made history in 2009 when he threw a no-hitter in July, and over his next 10 starts he turned in six quality starts, 75 strikeouts versus 27 walks in 59 2/3 innings. But then he reverted back to his inconsistent self, and in the last five starts of 2009, he failed to get out of the sixth inning, allowing 36 base-runners and six home runs in 25 innings pitched.  In 2010, he had similar stats to his 2009 season, but he benefited greatly from the Giants defense, as he saw his BAPIP down to .252, and as a result his ERA dropped to 3.07, and he lead the majors in hits per nine (6.6 H/9).

He has a live arm and throws from a 3/4 arm slot. He has a sneaky fast 91-94 mph fastball, and compliments it with a biting slider (80 mph) and a split finger/change up (80 mph) that runs down and away from righties. Scuffles with his mechanics and command at times and loses focus with adversity (sound like Ollie P??). He's a fly-ball pitcher, who misses a ton of bats (9.5 K/9 for career, 11.0 K/9 this year), but also walks a bunch (4.64 W/9 career, 5.4 W/9 for the year). His fastball has been his only plus pitch. He throws 1st pitch fastball 69% of the time and he still leans on his slider with two strikes, throwing it 51% of the time when the count is 1-2.

This year he's 2-1 in 6 starts, with a 2.73 ERA and 1.33 WHIP, largely due to his terrible walk rate. He's gone 5 innings in each of the starts, but the longest outing has been 6 1/3, and has thrown 100+ pitches only twice. He did throw 30+ innings more than his previous high last year during the regular season, and he also threw 20 innings in the post-season, so maybe this is why the Giants are limiting his workload, or is it because he walks too many hitters?

For his career against the Mets, he's 2-1 in 6 starts with a 3.89 ERA and 1.27 WHIP. He faced the Mets twice last year, including a seven inning start on May 7th against the Mets, allowing four earned runs, while walking only one, but let up three home runs (two versus Ike Davis, one vs Barajas).He threw 7 innings against the Mets in his June start, and got a no-decision in his quality start, but did let up a home run to David Wright.

Multiple scouts have made the comp to OLIVER PEREZ (when Perez actually had good stuff).  For those reading at home, that's not good. Overall he has filthy stuff, but can lose focus/mechanics/command quickly.

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