John Jaso – 2010 Topps Update
November 10, 2010
“Safe, Right? I Had To Be Safe!”
First off, I’m in Madison, as it is a good center of ops as I go to Racine tomorrow and DePere on Friday. That’s Wisconsin, for you. And I have a report to finish up. Yikes…
Second, while I was in Madison, I had a repast with the great and awesome CDP, who has written a book that I highly recommend. Yes, while Ryan has written a lot about his childhood, and caused a lot of recessed memories to the forefront (JENNIFER CRAIG! ANITA HORN! MINDY AVERY! ARGH!) it’s a hell of a read. So, READ IT!
Third, I also had repast with the great and awesome wife of the CDP, and a great and awesome co-worker of the CDP, who shall remain anonymous, except that the co-worker will jam me into the boards if I don’t promote THIS. (Yes, Troll, it’s Roller Derby!)
OK, now, back to Jaso. Remember him. The card way back at the top of the post??
He’s a rookie. He’s a catcher. He batted leadoff the most times for the Rays this year. (45 times, while Jason Bartlett batted first 44 times.) He had the best OBP for the Rays this year, so Joe Maddon was quite smart in batting Jaso leadoff when he played, even if he ran like the catcher he was.
And he’s getting a dirt hardpack in the shot above!
At age 26, Jaso’s an older rookie, but he’s also a catcher, so that factors into things as well. He was drafted way back in 2003, spent two years at short season Hudson Valley, and slowly worked his way up the minor league ladder. Each step of the way, he got on base and played well, but the Rays had catchers in front of him (Hall and Navarro) so he bided his time.
It paid off – Jaso was definitely ready for the bigs and came through with a good season when Navarro spit the bit. And while some would say (Joe Morgan…) that his BA wasn’t high, he didn’t have much power, and well, he wasn’t a sexy candidate, Jaso was definitely in the team picture for Rookie Of The Year.
But as the card show, I don’t think that matters. Jaso’s willing to do what it takes to do to win.
Even if it takes a face full of dirt.