It’s Not Super Two

Dave · June 14, 2011 at 12:40 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Since people keep referring to the Super Two deadline as a reason why Dustin Ackley is still in Tacoma, I figured I’d just do the math. A day of service is any day that a player is on the active roster during the regular season, whether that team has a game that day or not.

Today is June 14th. The regular season ends on September 28th. By month, the number of service time dates available, including today:

June: 17
July: 31
August: 31
September: 28

17+31+31+28 = 107 days. That is the amount of service time that Dustin Ackley would accrue if the Mariners called him up tonight.

Last year, the Super Two cutoff was 122 days. Most years, it’s been over 130, but it’s going down as more teams are waiting to keep their top prospects away from that extra arbitration year if they can. A reasonable estimate for the 2013 Super Two crop would be around 110-115 days, which is why you saw a lot of teams call up their better prospects last week – Anthony Rizzo (SD), Mike Moustakas (KC), Jemile Weeks (OAK), and Dee Gordon (LA) all made their MLB debuts between June 6th and 10th, and that wasn’t a coincidence.

There’s almost no chance that the Super Two cutoff is only 107 days in 2013. Baseball America keeps a chart of all the players who have made their debut this season, and a lot of those guys have remained in the Majors since they were called up. It is not hard to find ~20 guys (the number of players who qualified for Super Two status last winter) on that list who will likely have more service time than Ackley, even if he’s called up today.

The Mariners showed that they didn’t care about Super Two status, or even the extra year of team control, when it came to Michael Pineda. We’re almost certainly past the super two deadline with Dustin Ackley, and yet he’s still in Tacoma. The only reasonable conclusion is that his promotion timetable has nothing to do with service time, and everything to do with the forced reduction in playing time for either (or both) Chone Figgins and Adam Kennedy. The M’s are apparently not yet willing to make those two share third base, and that is almost certainly the reason why Ackley is still in Triple-A.

Comments

42 Responses to “It’s Not Super Two”

  1. robbbbbb on June 14th, 2011 12:44 pm

    Can I get an “Arrrrggggghhh!”

  2. Typical Idiot Fan on June 14th, 2011 12:47 pm

    Either that, or they’re trying to trade Jack Wilson to someone who suddenly needs a short stop. That would include the Giants and, now, maybe the Yankees.

  3. FELIXisKING on June 14th, 2011 12:48 pm

    I don’t know how we’d survive putting a guy on the shelf that’s hitting .190/.239/.494. That production is difficult to find and I personally don’t see Ackley surpassing that. Keep him in Tacoma.

  4. Typical Idiot Fan on June 14th, 2011 12:55 pm

    .190/.239/.494.

    Who the blithering hell is putting up that line?

    *edit*

    Oh wait, I see, that third slash is his OPS. Don’t do that. It’s confusing.

  5. Mike Snow on June 14th, 2011 1:00 pm

    Peguero could get close to a line like that with some more playing time, if all of his hits are home runs.

    Don’t do that. It’s confusing.

    Which is more confusing – the format it was presented in, or the fact that Figgins has an OPS so low, it looks like a slugging percentage?

  6. Ibuprofen on June 14th, 2011 1:05 pm

    I nearly had a brain aneurysm when I saw Figgins boot that simple ground ball last night. I don’t think I can survive much longer if Ackley isn’t called up soon.

  7. bugrat6 on June 14th, 2011 1:06 pm

    Ackley won’t be down in AAA for the rest of the season, and the Kennedy/Figgins situation won’t change unless the organization makes a roster change. If that is in fact what’s keeping Ackley down, then it follows of necessity that a trade or release is in the offing. A trade seems more likely – if it’s an internal move, the FO wouldn’t be waiting around right now.

  8. Westside guy on June 14th, 2011 1:07 pm

    Consistency is important. When you’re looking at the other end of the scale, earlier this season Jose Bautista put up a slugging percentage so high it looked like OPS. People shouldn’t have to guess what the numbers are.

  9. saintnumberfive on June 14th, 2011 1:07 pm

    What’s interesting is if you go to ESPN.com right now, literally right now, as it may change in 20 minutes, Dustin Ackley is on the main page headlining the article of prospects who are soon to see the majors. And on his ETA: “Any day”

  10. Westside guy on June 14th, 2011 1:09 pm

    BTW FELIXisKING I did catch and appreciate the sarcasm. :D

    Maybe it’s a health concern on the part of team officials. If Figgins sits, Safeco fans will have to find some other way to exercise their lungs. If we’re not careful, Seattle could see a sudden outbreak of asthma or something.

  11. Typical Idiot Fan on June 14th, 2011 1:14 pm

    Which is more confusing – the format it was presented in, or the fact that Figgins has an OPS so low, it looks like a slugging percentage?

    Both because of the latter.

  12. PackBob on June 14th, 2011 1:16 pm

    My guess is they are still hoping like crazy to get Figgens going and are buying some extra time for him to play regularly and get back on track. If he does, then Kennedy could replace around the infield, including Figgens a day or two a week. If not, it would be hard not to play Kennedy over Figgens.

    Just another reason to be upset over the lack of performance by Figgens.

  13. OffensivelyChallenged on June 14th, 2011 1:21 pm

    I’m a bit baffled. Now is the time to call Ackley up. It’s time to bite the bullet with Figgins. Just add it to the list of bad FA signings. Mariners are 2 games out and need someone who can get on base consistently and Ackley is the best solution IMO. Figgins is just blaahhhh.

  14. mlathrop3 on June 14th, 2011 1:25 pm

    Oh my, now the argument is that Figgins is blocking Ackley? I don’t think I could loathe Figgins any more than I do right now.

    I think the fact that I percieved some extra effort from him when he batted leadoff made it even worse.

    Free Ackley!

  15. shortbus on June 14th, 2011 1:38 pm

    As a guy whose skillset is really perfect for the leadoff role, Figgins just isn’t a good fit on the M’s. The crappy defense at third makes it even worse, but on a good day he’s too similar a player to Ichiro and because of that I’m afraid he’s been pressing to try to change his game. You never want to do that with an expensive FA.

    Unfortunately the only way to test this theory is for Figgins to hit leadoff. Not going to happen. And with the way he’s played, nobody will trade for him. The best the team can do is bat him ninth and tell him to hit like a leadoff hitter and hope he responds.

    I think they need to bring up Ackley and let Kennedy swipe the occasional start at 3B, 2B, 1B DH, and PH. He’s a 35-year-old utility player and his AB’s shouldn’t be a driving force in this decision, in my opinion.

  16. The_Waco_Kid on June 14th, 2011 1:52 pm

    What do you do with the roster? Send LuRod down and let things get very crowded? Hope someone wants Jack Wilson? Sell high on Kennedy? I can’t imagine anyone wants Cust. Just seems silly to carry AK, JW, Figgins, and Ackley. Trying to get AK starts at DH means 3 lefty DH’s. I haven’t heard a single thing about any potential trades.

  17. Brzeczyszczykiewicza on June 14th, 2011 1:55 pm

    There’s plenty of playing time for Ackley, Kennedy, and Figgins, when you factor in the needed days of rest. Anyway, Figgins has looked a lot better lately, hitting balls hard, getting extra base hits, and taking walks, so permanently benching him now would be the wrong idea when he’s getting ready to heat up for the rest of the season.

  18. huskies2010 on June 14th, 2011 1:56 pm

    It’s been suggested that they just don’t want him debuting against Philly, which seems about as reasonable as any other explanation.

  19. cmonseattle on June 14th, 2011 2:07 pm

    He could just debut against the Angels.

  20. CMC_Stags on June 14th, 2011 2:32 pm

    Figgins … crappy defense at third makes it even worse

    What? Because he’s not Adrian Beltre does not mean he’s crappy.

  21. Ibuprofen on June 14th, 2011 2:42 pm

    What? Because he’s not Adrian Beltre does not mean he’s crappy.

    The fact that he frequently misplays routine groundballs does though.

  22. JMHawkins on June 14th, 2011 3:12 pm

    What? Because he’s not Adrian Beltre does not mean he’s crappy.

    So far this year he’s sligthly below average at 3B. Last year he was “bad” at 2B (about -1 win). The only two years of his career where he wasn’t a fairly bad defensive player were his last two in Anaheim, when he was actually pretty good. But if you exclude 2008-09, he’s played nearly 900 ML games and totaled -31.4 fielding RAR. Add in those two years, and he’s still slightly negative for his career.

    Here’s his fielding RAR by year, since he became a regular in 04:

    2004: 2.3
    2005: -9.7
    2006: -18.1
    2007: -2.2
    2008: 11.9
    2009: 16.2
    2010: -12.3
    2011: -1.2 (projected over season)

    He’s not just not Adrian Beltre, he’s not even Jack Hannahan.

  23. Snarf15 on June 14th, 2011 3:26 pm

    There’s plenty of playing time for Ackley, Kennedy, and Figgins, when you factor in the needed days of rest. Anyway, Figgins has looked a lot better lately, hitting balls hard, getting extra base hits, and taking walks, so permanently benching him now would be the wrong idea when he’s getting ready to heat up for the rest of the season.

    I agree. I hate Figgins just as much as anyone but his at bats and working the counts have looked a lot better lately. I also like him as 9 hitter too. His defense is terrible so I can’t support that haha. He seriously needs to learn how to get in front of a groundball though. Figgins foreshadowed to me that he was gonna be terrible with his new “aggressive approach.” All I’m saying is lately he’s been taking more pitches and walking more. Of course I would love Ackley, but I would like to see how Figgi does this week first.

  24. MrZDevotee on June 14th, 2011 3:43 pm

    I don’t think it has anything to do with Figgins… I think it’s more to do with trying to get something– ANYTHING– for Wilson, Cust or Kennedy, or a pitcher, rather than simply jettisoning a veteran, for nothing, just to make room for Ackley.

    Figgins isn’t going anywhere no matter how loudly we dream about it (his contract is the equivalent of naked pictures of Lincoln & Armstrong in the Congressional Locker Room, he’s got us by the balls, or “Weiner” as the case may be).

    Luis Rodriguez has no value right now with his batting line, so DFA’ing him gets us nothing but a yawn… So that’s pointless.

    Whereas if we can get ANYTHING for Kennedy, Cust or Wilson, or a pitcher, then we open up a spot, and Luis either stays and takes Wilson or Kennedy’s role as Backup INF #2, or he THEN is the next jettisoned guy to make room for whomever we trade for (if that guy is MLB ready).

    I support this strategy, futile as it may be (and assuming that’s what’s going on). If we DFA Kennedy or Wilson, it means we simply eat money and get nothing in return.

    Trades are gonna heat up here soon, and Ackley is fine in Tacoma. So there’s no rush, other than we’re all anxious to see the kid play. But however long he stays in Tacoma, he gets to play 2nd base everyday and keep refining his defense, so it’s not like he isn’t gaining anything by staying down there a bit more.

    Make it happen, Z! Do one of your magic tricks! (Pauley, Cust and Kennedy to the Yankees for Montero? *I kid*)

  25. Auggeydog on June 14th, 2011 4:01 pm

    I thought it was funny that Figgins error made 3 Jeers on Sports Nation. Seeing it again was actually pretty funny. When I coached I expected plays like that, but they were 11-12 yo’s.

  26. CMC_Stags on June 14th, 2011 4:02 pm

    Here’s his fielding RAR by year, since he became a regular in 04

    That’s a horrible misleading set of numbers you used there. His 2347 innings of below average defensive performance in the outfield has no bearing on his ability to play 3B…

    In over 5000 innings at 3B Figgins has a UZR/150 of 8.1. In that time, his total UZR is +26.9, his DRS is +35, and his TZL is +24.9 (05-09 only). If you want to make the argument that his range is down for 2011 and he is probably not a +8 run 3B anymore, that’s fine. But it’s not fair to say that you saw him boot a ball or two so he’s no good.

  27. BLYKMYK44 on June 14th, 2011 4:02 pm

    As a guy whose skillset is really perfect for the leadoff role, Figgins just isn’t a good fit on the M’s. The crappy defense at third makes it even worse, but on a good day he’s too similar a player to Ichiro and because of that I’m afraid he’s been pressing to try to change his game.

    - Can anyone point to me what Figgins needs to change batting ninth that batting first would magically cure? All the team is asking for him to do is get on base as much as possible. What would his spot in the order do to effect that?

    Even if you are one of those people who believes in “protection” it would seem like batting in front of Ichiro would basically be the best position on the entire team.

  28. KiWiNiNjA on June 14th, 2011 4:09 pm

    Doesn’t Rodriguez have an option left? If so then optioning him is the simple solution, he also seems to be at the back of the INF traffic jam behind Kennedy/Wilson.

    Maybe they want him playing everyday until the glut of middle infielders either stop performing at an acceptable level or get traded.

  29. rjjunior on June 14th, 2011 4:40 pm

    Figgins leads the regulars in OBP over the last 6 games. He’s cured! *cough*

  30. MarinerFanMike03 on June 14th, 2011 4:53 pm

    ESPN has a good write up on top prospects in the minors regarding Ackley. Here

  31. djw on June 14th, 2011 5:08 pm

    The only reasonable conclusion is that his promotion timetable has nothing to do with service time, and everything to do with the forced reduction in playing time for either (or both) Chone Figgins and Adam Kennedy.

    Isn’t it possible that some people in the organization disagree with the claim that he’s got nothing left to learn in AAA? Especially given some of the mixed reports we’ve heard about his 2B defense, this seems like at least a possibility.

  32. MrZDevotee on June 14th, 2011 5:14 pm

    BLYKMYK44

    Can anyone point to me what Figgins needs to change batting ninth that batting first would magically cure?

    Honestly, I think it has to do with touchy feely stuff. Sounds stupid, but I think motivation is the single thing Figgins is lacking. He got his big payday, then he got moved down in the lineup (#2 was a demotion, and then to #9, we saw how that went last year– but he can’t really argue this year), plus he’s been moved around defensively, he’s on a team that isn’t going to the World Series (coming here from one that was in the hunt every year- and he probably was told as a free agent “we’re gonna compete!”).

    Do I have a stat for it? No. But the eyeball says he’s playing more horrible than could possibly be expected. And doesn’t seem all that involved with the average grind of an average team in his head and heart. (Remember last year, his benching and dugout confrontation all came on a play he couldn’t be bothered to back up a throw…). I don’t think Wedge will let it ever get that bad– and commands more respect (remember the Jack Wilson “you don’t wanna play… fine, you’re not out there then”?).

    I don’t think it’s on purpose, and he does look like he’s trying hard to figure it out. But nothing else makes sense.

    He was a good 3B, he was a .280-.290 hitter, he led the league in walks, was a good OBP guy, caused havoc on the basepaths… But all that disappeared once he cashed in and came to Seattle. (He did reach his normal number for steals last year, though.)

    Sucks. For him, for the Mariners, and surely for us.

    Hopefully he rights the ship, but so far the choppy waters are winning.

  33. NF on June 14th, 2011 5:54 pm

    I was on the Rainiers website and saw an ad that said “Free Dustin Ackley Poster!”. For a minute I though it was a poster that said “Free Dustin Ackley!” and wanted one. Then I realized it was just a free “Dustin Ackley” poster. Sigh….I would have happily waved that around Safeco.

  34. number3 on June 14th, 2011 6:33 pm

    I think it’s because they didn’t want him to have to come up and start off his career facing Haren, Weaver, Oswalt and Hamels. And maybe there’s less pressure on him if he makes his debut on the road rather than at home.

  35. scraps on June 14th, 2011 6:53 pm

    MrZDevotee: If I believed your supposition — which I don’t, frankly; I believe the Safeco explanation more, and I believe Figgins would “magically” improve removed from here — in case, if I believed your touchy feeley explanation, then I don’t want Chone Figgins near the team: he’s fragile mentally.

  36. Rick L on June 14th, 2011 7:30 pm

    Or maybe they don’t think that Ackley’s numbers at triple A will translate anymore than Carp’s, and Wilson’s. OPS leaders at Tacoma: Mike Wilson, 1.111; Mike Carp, 1.069, Michael Saunders!, .952; Ackley, .902.

  37. qwerty on June 14th, 2011 7:46 pm

    Word is that LA Angels miss their version of Figgins. Perhaps they can take him?

  38. flashbeak on June 15th, 2011 6:41 am

    Or maybe they don’t think that Ackley’s numbers at triple A will translate anymore than Carp’s, and Wilson’s. OPS leaders at Tacoma: Mike Wilson, 1.111; Mike Carp, 1.069, Michael Saunders!, .952; Ackley, .902.

    Ackley is a hitter mature beyond his years. His plate discipline and eye are arguably the best in all of the minors, he is less prone to striking out than those guys, and he’s a superior contact hitter to all of them. He has 17 more walks than he does strikeouts. That should say it all right there. Not to mention, he is putting up similar production to them with much less minor league experience. Ackley has an offensive profile that is much more likely to swiftly translate into the big leagues.

  39. xsacred24x on June 15th, 2011 9:29 am

    Does Kennedy have the arm to play 3rd base? He really didn’t look that great playing 2nd base the last few times.

  40. JMHawkins on June 15th, 2011 2:14 pm

    That’s a horrible misleading set of numbers you used there. His 2347 innings of below average defensive performance in the outfield has no bearing on his ability to play 3B…

    Okay, fine. But outside of 08-09, he has nearly 3000 innings (about 2.25 year’s worth) at 3B with a -0.3 RAR. He played just under two years worth of good 3B, just over 2 years worth of mediocre 3B, and about 2 years worth of bad OF. (edit, and of course 2 years of bad 2B)

    I still say he ain’t Jack Hannahan.

  41. groundzero55 on June 15th, 2011 2:22 pm

    Make it happen, Z! Do one of your magic tricks! (Pauley, Cust and Kennedy to the Yankees for Montero? *I kid*)

    Montero isn’t looking like the sterling prospect he used to be. His D is horrible…HORRIBLE. He probably won’t even be a catcher in the majors. I’m glad we passed on going for him.

  42. MrZDevotee on June 15th, 2011 4:45 pm

    Groundzero-
    Agreed, which was why I added the not obvious enough “I kid” attempt at jesting… I was making fun of everyone who wanted to sell the farm for a guy I never really wanted, even last year, and who from every outward appearance isn’t destined to shine as brightly as once imagined.

    (I forgot that not everyone had the same number of Guinness inside them as I did when I made the comment… Oops.)

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