John Jaso: Eagle Eye Cherry


Dioner Navarro, Shawn Riggans, Gregg Zaun, and Michel Hernandez teamed up in 2009 to provide the Rays with a .275 On-Base-Percentage from the catcher position. Thank goodness an early season injury to Kelly Shoppach allowed for John Jaso to provide an individual OBP of of .376 year-to-date, a full .101 above the team number last year. What Jaso has done in terms of plate discipline is remarkable for a rookie, albeit a 26 year old.

Consider this since 1960 (50 years) only 19 times has an American League catcher had 350 plate appearances, with a BB% of 13% or greater and had more walks than strikeouts. We talk about being patient at the plate, and then we talk about being disciplined. To walk 14.5% of the time and maintain a BB/K of 1.47 is about as disciplined as one can be. Of those 19 season, Jaso's 14.5% BB% currently has him placed 7th.

 

Player

PA

BB%

K%

BB/K

Year

Age

Darrell Porter

679

17.8%

9.6%

1.86

1979

27

Darrell Porter

511

17.4%

15.1%

1.16

1975

23

Butch Wynegar

375

17.1%

11.5%

1.49

1985

29

Brian Downing

516

14.7%

14.5%

1.01

1975

24

Mike Stanley

473

14.6%

13.1%

1.11

1996

33

Butch Wynegar

357

14.6%

8.1%

1.79

1983

27

John Jaso

365

14.5%

9.9%

1.47

2010

26

 

In terms of BB/K, Jaso's season puts him 9th:

 

Player

PA

BB%

K%

BB/K

Year

Age

Darrell Porter

679

17.8%

9.6%

1.86

1979

27

Butch Wynegar

357

14.6%

8.1%

1.79

1983

27

Joe Mauer

633

13.3%

7.9%

1.68

2008

25

Ron Hassey

382

13.9%

8.4%

1.66

1982

29

Ernie Whitt

468

13.0%

8.1%

1.61

1988

36

Butch Wynegar

375

17.1%

11.5%

1.49

1985

29

Jim Essian

381

13.6%

9.2%

1.49

1977

26

John Jaso

365

14.5%

9.9%

1.47

2010

26

Jaso is the 5th youngest player to join this club behind Jim Sundberg, Darrell Porter, Joe Mauer, and Brian Downing. Finally we will look at each of the 13 players career BB%, K/BB%  OBP, and earliest age when this feat was accomplished.

Career

BB%

BB/K

OBP

Age

seasons

Joe Mauer

12.1%

1.2

0.408

23

2

John Jaso

14.1%

1.4

0.372

26

1

Mike Stanley

13.1%

0.7

0.370

33

1

Brian Downing

12.9%

1.1

0.370

24

1

Ellie Rodriguez

12.7%

1.1

0.356

28

1

John Romano

12.7%

0.9

0.354

27

1

Darrell Porter

13.8%

0.9

0.354

23

3

Butch Wynegar

12.4%

1.5

0.348

27

2

Gregg Zaun

11.9%

0.9

0.344

34

1

Geno Petralli

10.1%

0.8

0.344

30

1

Ron Hassey

9.9%

1.0

0.340

29

1

Jim Sundberg

10.1%

0.7

0.327

23

1

Jim Essian

10.8%

1.4

0.327

26

1

Ernie Whitt

9.5%

0.6

0.324

36

1

With the exception of Sundberg, all other catchers who achieved this feat in their 20's maintained a career BB/K north of .9. John Jaso: the next Brian Downing, Butch Wynegar, or Darrell Porter? That works for me and with a full plate of cost-control left you can be sure the Rays are pleased as well.

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