Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Along with Ziegler, York and Guerra Earn High Marks

Brad Ziegler's numbers are getting insane with a 0.61 ERA in save situations this season and 43 consecutive saves overall, but I also tip my hat very high among the new products out of the Independent leagues; Washington's Tanner Roark (Southern Illinois Miners, Frontier League) and Junior Guerra (Wichita Wingnuts, American Association) of Milwaukee.

Ziegler (Schaumburg, then in the Northern League) has been around for a while, in fact long enough that the Arizona side-armer's 564 career appearances are the most in the majors since 2008.

The Washington Post credits Roark's improved command of his two-seam fastball as the biggest reason the right-hander now owns one of the lowest earned run averages (3.14) on the potent Nationals' starting rotation and is now striking out nearly 8.1 hitters every nine innings.  He has a 6-4 record for 14 starts this season.

Guerra, the onetime catcher who really started getting pitching notice when he went 18-7 while working for Wichita in 2011 and 2013, had only three major league appearances--a non-descript four innings in relief for the Chicago White Sox last season--until the Brewers called him up from Triple-A Colorado Springs the first week of May.

The 31-year-old seems to have become a steady starter for Milwaukee with a 3-1 record and a 3.81 ERA for nine outings.  He has allowed only 46 hits in 54.1 innings and has 45 punchouts.

"He's certainly done his job," manager Craig Counsell told FoxSports.com.  "He's (gotten better as the game goes on) in a bunch of his starts.  He's getting to 90-100 pitches and still going strong, still going really good."

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