Ryan Anderson Relief Squad: Outfielders + DH

I had every intention to post this yesterday but with everything going on it just wasn’t ready to be published and I had other things on my plate.

As always there are always some things that can be argued and reasons to root for player A vs. player B. But, this is my list. If I’m around next year it’s something I’ll try to do then too.  It’s purely of my own thoughts and if you disagree with it then you disagree with it.

So there you are and here are the outfielders + the designated hitter for the “Ryan Anderson Relief Squad”.


LF – Nate Tenbrink

2010 23 2 Teams AA-A+ 485 75 130 21 10 14 70 26 3 60 87 .318 .409 .521 .930
2010 23 High Desert A+ 201 38 66 10 5 9 42 14 1 22 33 .377 .449 .646 1.095
2010 23 West Tenn AA 284 37 64 11 5 5 28 12 2 38 54 .274 .381 .427 .808

Tenbrink over a short series of months got promoted, struck in the head with a 90-mph fastball and then took hitting +.270/.380/.420 in a pitchers league! I have a lot of love for Tenbrink and believe he is an every day player. I am amazed he fell so far on my on rankings (18) this winter.

The biggest problem it seems people have is that he plays such a wide variety of positions. I’ve heard people say that his defense is much better than that of Alex Liddi at third (not that it’s too big of an accomplishment). But, Liddi profiles is higher in the organization and he’s going to get the reps to prove he can’t play there. So then you have him playing left field, shortstop, second base, right field and first base just so he can get in at bats.

He is one of the most overlooked legit prospects in the system and I really think he’s going to open up a lot of eyes this year.


CF – Brandon Haveman

2009 23 Pulaski Rk 188 33 56 9 4 5 18 4 3 18 26 .339 .405 .533 .939
2010 24 West Tenn AA 250 29 68 6 3 1 20 10 4 14 28 .296 .343 .361 .704
2 Seasons 438 62 124 15 7 6 38 14 7 32 54 .314 .370 .433 .802

HAHV- MAN. Is one of the more interesting bats out there. He’s a little scrapper, standing only5’9, he’s gone on to post an OPS north of .800 in his short 438 plate appearances between rookie ball and AA. That’s impressive.

He struggled early on with some injuries and didn’t report to the team until sometime in June but in the opportunity given he clearly showed that he has some tools to work with. His speed is slightly above average, his defense in center is very good, his understanding of the strike zone is strong and his ability to make contact is solid.

The only thing that works against him is, like many others, his power. I think Haveman could be a 4th outfielder should his defense prove to be as good as advertised and he continues making solid contact. He should start the year off again in Jackson and hopefully I’ll get a chance to see him then with my own eyes.


RF – Kevin Rivers

2010 21 Everett A- 309 48 80 13 4 11 48 5 3 60 62 .332 .466 .556 1.022

Rivers is an interesting character. Signed as an undrafted free-agent in 2009 and really destroyed the pitching in Everett this past year. I really would not be surprised to see the Mariners attempt to bump him up a couple of levels where he could start the season in High Desert.

The biggest thing I like to high light with Rivers isn’t just the slugging percentage but really the walk-to-strikeout ratio he produced. Nearly 1-1. While he struck out quiet a bit he also took a lot of walks. This is really interesting and though he sits at #51 overall right now I wouldn’t be surprised to see him jump into the upper 30 by years end.


DH – Rich Poythress

2010 22 High Desert A+ 544 88 150 33 0 31 130 3 2 52 100 .315 .381 .580 .960

Poythress sits at DH on this list but that’s simply because I wanted to profile Savastano as the first basemen. I really believe the Poythress could very well be a first basemen. Looking at some of the video from when he was at Georgia Poythress isn’t as lumbering as he appears. He had some quick movements and while there is no scenerio that has him even sniffing third base, I believe he could be an average fielding first basemen.

I also believe he is one of the best pure hitters in the organization. Sure, he is going to be carried by his bat simply because he doesn’t have much of a position but I believe in that bat. I don’t believe he’s a pure 30+ home run threat. But I certainly believe you can count on him hitting over 20 this year between Jackson and Tacoma. Doing it with a combined slash line of .275/.350/.520.write that down.

The one thing that I’ve been disappointed about with Poythress is simply the lack of walks. After being drafted he showed a great ability to recognize pitches and understand the strike zone. While it’s still slightly above average, it’s not where I had expected it to be. I really hope with moving out of High Desert it will encourage him to take more pitches


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Tags: Brandon Haveman Kevin Rivers Nate Tenbrink Rich Poythress

  • http://www.marinercentral.com Lonnie

    Nice group of guys to highlight, Harrison.

    I think it can go without saying that I am driving the Nate Tenbrink bandwagon. I like EVERYTHING that this young man has been doing so far. When I saw him at ST he was working at 3rd and LF with the AAA group, and everything that I saw showed that he belonged in that group. Everything that he hit was smacked smartly, and he showed great instincts at 3rd and in LF. There is a small group of us that are hoping that he gets more time at 3rd to hone his defense. If he can stick at 3rd you can pencil him in as the heir-apparent as Figgy’s replacement.

    The conundrum of having both Liddi and Tenbrink has been cleaned up a little. I got word yesterday that Nate is going to go back to AA Jackson. What position he’ll be working at down there isn’t really clear, but I think he was sent down to work at 3rd. My fingers are crossed. The only challenger he has at third is possibly Kyle Seager, but they may keep him at 2nd base.

    I got a pretty good opportunity to watch Brenden Haveman while I was there. I talked to a couple of coaches about him, and it’s kind of interesting how I got a couple of different stories. One was that he was injured, and the other was that he wasn’t injured last year and was just kept in extended ST. I can’t believe that they kept him down just for extended ST. That makes no sense.

    I talked to one coach who said that a week or so after joining the West Tenn squad someone approached Phil Plantier (the manager) and asked him if he wanted to send Haveman down to High Desert. Plantier’s response was reported (this is third-party, so it is probably more than a little bit of paraphrased) as “Hell no! All Haveman does is get on base, steal second, move to third on a ground out, and then score the next time someone puts that bat on the ball”.

    I get the feeling that Haveman gets either a lot of kudos for his efforts, or no respect at all from the coaching staff’s because he isn’t 6’3″ and 190lbs. If you look at what all he’s had to do just to get to where he is today you’d see the typical small-guy hoops that he’s had to jump through. I’m talking about from High School and on.

    I’ve got nothing to report on Rivers other than he doesn’t look like the picture that they have of him at the MiLB.com site, and he has a sweet looking swing.

    Poythress is an interesting specimen. When we first saw him down at ST we (a fellow member at marinercentral) swore that it couldn’t have been him. The guy we say didn’t look big enough. From the articles and what not that I have read I thought that we would be looking at a Jack Cust clone who hits from the right side. No, Poythress is a big guy, but he is very proportionate.

    Poythress was also working with the AAA squad at ST, but with Tui back on the AAA roster I think that we’ll be seeing Rich get his ticket punched for Jackson.


  • Harrison Crow

    Without a doubt, I agree that all three of those guys deserve to be in Tacoma but the depth that is starting to be cultivated is going to push those guys to Jackson. What’s great about all this is there is SO MUCH compitition and depth that it doesn’t live and die with one guy.

    I know you are a huge Tenbrink fan and if you drive the wagon i’ll blow the horn and we’ll ralley the troups together!

    • http://www.marinercentral.com Lonnie

      I’ve got a feeler out on one more guy who was trying to break with the AAA group and totally bypass AA. Kenn Kasparek. He looked really good when I saw him and I have high hopes for him. With the starting pitching that got pushed down out of the Mariners camp, they will need one or two more arms to complete the rotation. If KK makes it, that will say a lot about what the brass think about him. He was also one of the friendliest guys to talk to at ST.


      • Harrison Crow

        You don’t think Jarrett Grube will be used? He had some fine moments last year.

        • http://www.marinercentral.com Lonnie

          I’m not a big Grube fan, and when he is added to the stack of potential starter candidates he slips down to the bottom of the growing pile. I had totally forgotten about Steven Hensley, who looked borderline awesome last night in his one inning of work.

          Here’s a name to keep an eye on: Donnie Hume. He looked really good in ST and should be heading to AA after missing all of last year to an injury.