Dear John Jaso,
You’re a good hitter, I certainly appreciate that and from reading the comments on the post yeasterday would think that I claimed you were a terribly player and that I hated the trade. I certainly don’t and I am quiet in favor of your arrival to Seattle, despite the fact that it took away one of the players I was looking forward to seeing in 2012.
I understand you also are looking forward to playing for us, that’s a super! So long as your manager [Eric Wedge] properly administers the platoon between youself and Miguel Olivo there really shouldn’t be much to complain about at the plate. In fact it could even get quite exciting at times.
I did bring a few negative aspects of your game up in that last post because I believe fans keep missing the whole take the good with the bad. While that’s not to point out that your a bad player, it was an effort to keep all of us grounded with expectations. The fact is your skill set is in general is undervalued by many people in the league and you are exactly what I’ve been arguing for in terms of talent that is easily acquired and can help build this offense.
I know that you are predominately a singles and walks guy. Does that make you not valuable? Of course not and I think some people misunderstand that. I know you are already easily the best hitting catcher we have in the organization and while that’s not really saying much it’s certainly going to be refershing from our perspective.
The only thing I’m going to mention and I don’t want you to take offense to this is that while you have a great ability at the plate you are one of the worst defenders at your position. I’m sorry, John but it’s true. Your arm is below average and let’s be fair you lack any ability to control the running game. Not only that what further complicates things is your apparent lack of recieving skills as well as blocking any pitches that end up in the dirt.
This is going to be a serious problem for you here than what it was in Tampa. Sure you had some great pitchers you were responsible for but here you now having the responsibility to catcher two of the enigmatic fastballs in all of baseball not to mention their filthy breaking pitches.
Here in Seattle we’re already familiar with poor defenders behind the plate. So, don’t worry too much about that. We’ve already put up with it for the past three years so at least the first year it’s not going to be a big deal so long as you look like your trying.
Safeco Field fans can be fickle and are quick to forget so long as you can do one thing. You need to hit. I’m not asking for a batting average north of .300, though if you could provide that it would be cool. I’m just asking you to continue with your great approach to the plate. Don’t worry about the lack of line drives that you hit or the 0 in the home runs column you aren’t here for that. Sure they are awesome to watch and will send any Seattle crowd in a fit of pandemonium even if it just brings the score to 2-4.
The only thing that we hold you responsible for at this time is getting on base. It’s very, very simple. You do that and I won’t make a big deal that you allowed 5 stolen bases in a game or that Felix shouldn’t be blamed for three wild pitches. You get on base and people will forget that about your poor defense.
Ask Miguel. Seriously. The guy couldn’t do anything wrong for a couple months because he hit like 6 home runs. 6! It’s not even that many. You pull an on base average near .350 or .360 and you’ll be untouchable in this town.
I look forward to you stealing as many at bats from Olivo as possible and helping this offense become league average this year. There is a lot of work to do and I hope you didn’t take offense to me being a negative nancy. I believe very much in defense even more so in the big three premium positions (C, SS and CF).
I’d rather have an above average defender and an below average bat than an below average defender and an average bat. Everyone has their own opinion when it comes to roster construction. I realize that you don’t take this personal as I’m just a blogger and who really takes me serious anyways…
Best of luck on your Mariner career and I look forward to you helping our guys make a run towards being a playoff contender.