Monday, September 21, 2015

Quad Cities River Bandits: 2015 Season in Review

Quad Cities led the minor leagues for most of the season in wins, but ultimately finished with one fewer win than Corpus Christi. However, due to the fact that they played one fewer game (and had one game declared a tie), Quad Cities ended up leading the way in win percentage over the Hooks .638 to .636. Quad Cities advanced to the playoffs by winning the first half, but fell to Cedar Rapids in the quarterfinals and did not advance. Let's take a look at the team performance within the league and some of the individual standouts.

Nick Tanielu - August 2015
Photo by Jayne Hansen

Note all rankings are out of 16 total teams

Batting average: .265 (3rd)
On-base percentage: .346 (1st)
Slugging percentage: .380 (2nd)
Doubles: 221 (9th)
Triples: 45 (T4th)
Home runs: 72 (T6th)
Walks: 560 (1st)
Strikeouts: 1025 (10th)
Stolen bases: 145 (4th)

ERA: 2.65 (1st)
WHIP: 1.152 (1st)
Walks: 394 (12th)
Strikeouts: 1075 (5th)

The offense was extremely strong on this team, but the pitching was on a whole different level!!! Let's look at some of the team standouts.

Batting Average: Nick Tanielu (.308 - 5th in the league)
On-Base Percentage: Jamie Ritchie (.428 - promoted to Lancaster after 72 games)
Slugging Percentage: Nick Tanielu (.434)
Doubles: Nick Tanielu (27)
Triples: Ramon Laureano (8 - T3rd in the league)
Home Runs: Jason Martin (8)
RBI: Nick Tanielu (70 - 5th in the league)
Stolen Bases: Bobby Boyd (40 - 3rd in the league)
Walks: Jamie Ritchie (70 - T1st in the league)
Runs: Bobby Boyd (67)

In actuality, C Jacob Nottingham led the team in batting average, slugging and home runs in his 59 games at the level before his promotion to Lancaster and his trade to Oakland. Another player who made his mark prior to his mid-July promotion to Lancaster was C Jamie Ritchie. The fact that Ritchie was tied for first in the league in walks despite having spent almost two months of the season elsewhere is a testament to his on-base skills. Ritchie ended the season with a combined .281/.426/.393 line with 95 walks to 81 strikeouts in 111 games. Let's look at a few of the other team offensive standouts.

3B Nick Tanielu (23)
Tanielu (who just turned 23 on September 4th) emerged as a team leader during his 2015 campaign. In 110 games, the 2014 14th round pick hit a very consistent .308/.354/.434 with 27 doubles, four triples, six home runs and 70 RBI.

OF Bobby Boyd (22)
The 2014 8th rounder put his speed to good use in 2015, collecting 40 stolen bases to 12 caught stealing. He ended the season with a .283/.347/.363 line in 117 games.

1B Bryan Muniz (22)
Muniz did not fare well in his first stint with Quad Cities, but after a detour to Tri-City, he returned and excelled for the Banditos. For the season, the 2014 22nd rounder hit a combined .288/.400/.446 with 22 doubles, one triple, six home runs, 48 RBI and 44 walks to only 43 strikeouts in 74 games between the two venues, 45 with Quad Cities.

OF Jason Martin (20)
Martin just turned 20 earlier this month and was almost two and a half years younger than the average Midwest League position player. With that in mind, Martin's .270/.346/.396 batting line with 12 doubles, seven triples, eight home runs and 57 RBI in 105 games seems just that much more impressive. Martin was drafted in the 8th round in 2013.

Also of particular note are three players who spent part of their seasons with Quad Cities prior to promotions: OF Derek Fisher (.305/.386/.510 in 39 games); IF Mott Hyde (.292/.385/.410 in 50 games); and C Trent Woodward (.294/.363/.33 in 31 games).

ERA: Francis Martes (1.04 in 52IP)
WHIP: Francis Martes (0.885 in 52IP)
Strikeouts: Brock Dykxhoorn (94 in 109IP)
Saves: Angel Heredia (13 - 7th in the league)

With 37 pitchers having pitched at least a part of their season and a team ERA of 2.65, it's going to be difficult to write up every single standout on this team, but I'll do my best. Pitching Coach Dave Borkowski did a fantastic job with this crew! First let's look at a few of the pitchers who ended their seasons with Quad Cities:

RHP Josh James (22)
Although Francis Martes had better numbers than James at the level, James managed to sustain his over a team-leading 116.1 innings. The 2014 34th round pick ended the season with a 2.63 ERA (5th in the league for qualified pitchers) and a 1.229 WHIP (12th in the league).

RHP Dean Deetz (21)
Deetz, the 2014 11th round pick, did very well at Tri-City prior to his late July promotion to Quad Cities, putting up a 2.86 ERA and a 1.129 WHIP in 28.1 innings, but he kicked it into overdrive after the promotion. In 35.1 innings for the River Bandits (7 games/6 starts), Deetz had a 0.76 ERA and a 0.849 WHIP. He allowed only one earned run in his last six appearances and pitched seven no-hit innings on August 24th.

RHP Justin Ferrell (21)
Ferrell also had a terrific season for the River Bandits although he didn't join the team until mid-June. In 12 appearances (11 starts) for Quad Cities, he had a 1.98 ERA and a 1.160 WHIP in 64.2 innings. Ferrell was the 36th round pick in 2014.

RHP Eric Peterson (22)
Peterson made 34 bullpen appearances for a total of 62.2 innings with a 2.59 ERA and a 1.340 WHIP. The 37th round 2014 pick had the highest strikeout per nine ratio on the team with 10.8 strikeouts per nine innings pitched.

RHP Angel Heredia (23)
Heredia appeared in 27 games for the Bandits out of the bullpen. He had a 2.56 ERA and a 1.029 WHIP in 45.2 innings pitched and his 13 saves were second only in the organization to the Hooks Jandel Gustave.

RHP Riley Ferrell, the 2015 3rd round pick, saw limited action in Quad Cities having spent time on the DL and ended his season with a 1.08 ERA and a 1.380 WHIP in 16 innings of work. RHP Agapito Barrios built on his strong start with Tri-City to end his season with a 1.65 ERA and a 0.768 WHIP in his five starts at the higher level. RHP Rogelio Armenteros was a late promotion to Quad Cities, but pitched nicely in his three starts for the Bandits (2.65 ERA and 0.941 WHIP). Jacob Dorris and Andrew Thome also did very nicely after their late callups to the level.

There were also numerous pitchers who shone at the level before earning promotions:
RHP Joe Musgrove (0.70 ERA and 0.896 WHIP in 25.2IP)
RHP Keegan Yuhl (0.93 ERA and 0.879 WHIP in 19.1IP)
RHP Francis Martes (1.04ERA and 0.885 WHIP in 52IP)
RHP Michael Freeman (1.50 ERA and 1.167 WHIP in 18IP)
RHP Akeem Bostick (1.50 ERA and 0.762 WHIP in 42IP)
LHP Reymin Guduan (0.75 ERA ad 0.750 WHIP in 12IP)
LHP Steve Naemark (1.54 ERA and 1.029 WHIP in 11.2IP)
LHP Bryan Radziewski (2.05 ERA and 0.909 WHIP in 22IP)
RHP David Paulino (1.57 ERA and 0.977 WHIP in 28.2IP)
LHP Jordan Mills (2.25 ERA and 1.312 WHIP in 16IP)
RHP Christian Powell (2.59 ERA and 1.130 WHIP in 48.2IP)
RHP Austin Chrismon (2.96 ERA and 1.027 in 48.2IP)
LHP Albert Minnis (0.00 ERA and 0.522 WHIP in 7.2IP)
RHP Ryan Thompson (2.65 ERA and 1.067 WHIP in 54.1IP)

All told there were 22 pitchers who pitched varying amounts of times on the team who had an ERA below 3.00 AND a WHIP below 1.200. It's really hard to fathom the amount of pitching talent that this team saw in one season.

Previous Season Reviews:
Dominican Summer League Astros
Gulf Coast League Astros
Greeneville Astros
Tri-City ValleyCats

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