2015 Season In Review: Modesto Nuts
May 10, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; General view of a Colorado Rockies glove and hat during the seventh inning of the game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
2015 Nuts: Offense
The good: Raimel Tapia, Ryan McMahon, and Jordan Patterson were all brilliant in Modesto this year, each hitting over .300 in starter’s roles (and that earned Patterson a midseason call-up to AA New Britain, too). The Nuts had five players in double figures in homers; those three, plus Michael Benjamin and Correlle Prime.
McMahon led the club in homers (18), as well as virtually everything else: slugging percentage, on-base percentage, errors (unfortunately), runs scored, doubles, total bases, strikeouts… he was a one-man wrecking crew and/or a one-man weak spot, depending on the stat, situation, and game.
The bad: The Modesto Nuts got very little out of their catchers, Ashley Graeter, Troy Stein and Wilfredo Rodriguez.
Graeter slashed just .242/.285/.310 with 64 strikeouts in 304 at-bats, hitting just one home run and walking only 15 times in 82 games. Stein, in 77 games (266 at-bats), hit just .241, and while he did have a .321 on-base percentage (25 walks), he also struck out 81 times and had just a .346 slugging percentage.
Similarly, Rodriguez slashed a meager .224/.250/.298 in 64 games (228 at-bats), while walking only eight times and getting just 10 extra-base hits. With Dom Nunez, a catching prospect who played in Asheville in 2014, coming quickly through the system, it seems Modesto may have a productive backstop come 2016, though.
[ Related: 2015 AAA Albuquerque Player of the Year: Cristhian Adames ]
Noteworthy: The Nuts were steal-happy in 2015, getting caught the most times (85) in the California League while successfully swiping the second-most bags (136) this year, as well. It makes sense for a team that hit the second-fewest homers in the California League, and yet the second-most triples; to succeed on offense, the Modesto Nuts had to rely on speed a good bit more than your average professional ball club in 2015.
Tapia (26), Dillon Thomas (17) and Wilson Soriano (17) paced the Nuts’ offense in stolen bases, but everybody on the team who had more than 10 plate appearances in 2015 had at least one stolen base, so it was clearly a feature of their offense this year.
Big league ready: Obviously no one is truly big-league ready at the Class-A Advanced level, but Tapia, McMahon and Patterson have certainly all shown enough to be taken very seriously as possible big league prospects moving forward. It depends on how they do in AA next year (Patterson made the jump this summer and was good enough), but all three of those guys specifically bear watching next year.
Next: The 2015 Nuts' Pitching And Defense