Bonus

New York Penn League: Lowell Spinners Notes

The final six weeks of the regular season are yet to be played. For the Lowell Spinners, there is still plenty to play for,  so here’s what’s happening as the final push nears.

It’s a fact the Spinners have had trouble catching the baseball and throwing it to the right place. What has also become a problem is their inability to put the bat on the ball. In thirty games, the team has struck out a whopping 256 times in 963 plate appearances. In fact, the Spinners have more K’s than base hits (235).

Position chances are common at this level of pro ball. Yoan Aybar may be the next player facing that possibility. Aybar is a good outfielder with a terrific arm. However, he like several of his teammate’s strikeouts have been a source of concern. In his case, he has fanned 31 times in 89 AB, while only walking twice. There is a thought that if Aybar’s numbers do not improve the Red Sox may consider making him a pitcher to take advantage of his arm.

There is one thing the team does very well and that is stealing bases. They have 25 steals and have only been caught eight times. It’s a weapon that the coaching staff would like to use more often, but have had a hard time doing because of the troubles this team is having getting on base. Like the old saying goes, you can’t steal first base.

Third round pick Brett Netzer has been coming on of late. He’s had a hit in ten of his last 14 games when the just recent home stand came to an end. His batting average of .318 and his RBI total of 10 is among the team leaders. His .391 batting average with runners on base is his most impressive stat.

2017 first round pick Tanner Houck has made two starts to begin his pro career. Both starts have been at home and have not lasted very long.  His first appearance vs Aberdeen lasted only one inning giving up a pair of runs in the process. His second start last Saturday night vs Tri-City lasted one batter longer, 1.1 innings. He has fallen behind hitters in both outings which have led to a high pitch count. Once Houck learns how to throw strike one, his starts and results should get better.

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