Noesi down, Peguero up

Mike Snow · July 5, 2012 at 12:40 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

The Mariners have optioned Hector Noesi to Tacoma after another disappointing start. Carlos Peguero was called up to take his place on the roster. Before you get too outraged about Peguero, who’s unlikely to be any more helpful than he was last year, there are some points about the timing and circumstances you should keep in mind.

First of all, with the All-Star break coming up next week, pitcher workloads are less of a concern for a little while, so swapping out a pitcher for a bench bat makes perfect sense. A couple appearances pinch-hitting for Ryan or Kawasaki is okay and would at least provide some entertainment, it’s only really a problem if Wedge re-develops an irrational attachment to starting Peguero in left field all the time. Also, keep in mind that the pitching staff was at an insanely high 13 anyway, so this is really just re-balancing the roster to a more normal configuration. And it’s not like anyone else in Tacoma has been looking like a great option, at least of those on the 40-man roster who can be called up easily.

And ultimately, Peguero should only be up for however long it takes Gutierrez to be ready to come back from his concussion. They need to be appropriately cautious, but hopefully that won’t take too much longer.

As far as the future of the rotation after the break, that will depend on how well Millwood and Ramirez recover from their injuries. If they’re okay, you just leave Iwakuma in and that’s five. Otherwise, we might have to see Blake Beavan again.


41 Responses to “Noesi down, Peguero up”

  1. Westside guy on July 5th, 2012 1:00 pm

    I’ll try to remain rational, Mike. At least until the next lineup is posted.

    But it’s really hard sometimes.

  2. marc w on July 5th, 2012 1:02 pm

    Like Mike, I’m not too outraged over this move. Noesi needs to work on putting hitters away, and he’s done little to warrant a hold on his rotation spot. He’s got enough talent that I think he’ll be OK eventually, but there’s no harm in letting him work on his command in the minors.

    Peguero’s on another tear, having homered in 5 straight games, hitting six total in that span. For a team starved of power at home, I can follow the team’s logic a bit. But more interesting to me is the timing. They didn’t bring Peguero up when Gutierrez went on the DL – they brought up Josh Kinney. They didn’t bring Peguero up when Saunders was ill. Similarly, they brought Peguero up last April/May when he’d gotten off to a torrid start and when Mike Carp was scuffling. Then, when Carp was the hottest hitter in the PCL, the M’s made room for him.

    The point is that while sabermetrics counsels that the “hot hitter” is a myth, no one in baseball seems to believe in it more than the M’s. This isn’t Wedge’s doing – these are all front office moves. Maybe it’s used as a tie-breaker, and Peguero’s hot week was the final piece of evidence they needed to choose him over, say, Trayvon Robinson. But it’s starting to look like the M’s don’t put a lot of stock in the work that (M’s advisor) Tom Tango’s done disproving the “hot hand” theory.

  3. Westside guy on July 5th, 2012 1:03 pm

    Actually, after thinking about it for all of 30 seconds…

    Given how some of these guys are hitting – it would be okay if Wedge gave Peggy some DH starts. He’ll almost certainly suck; but we’re already used to that from the DH so what the heck!

  4. Mariners35 on July 5th, 2012 1:04 pm

    Aw, I was looking forward to seeing Dave froth at the mouth over Peguero. Bah.

  5. Westside guy on July 5th, 2012 1:06 pm

    I just hope that when Peguero’s the DH, Jaso is the catcher.

  6. Westside guy on July 5th, 2012 1:08 pm

    Marc (or Mike or whoever) –

    Do you have a feel for how much (if at all) a club’s big-league manager is involved in roster decisions like this one?

  7. furlong on July 5th, 2012 1:22 pm

    [spelling and grammar]

  8. marcus_andrews on July 5th, 2012 1:40 pm

    While by no means a Peguero supporter, I think this move makes perfect sense. If Montero won’t be able to go for a couple days that would have left us with 11 active hitters. On most days our bench would have been Kawasaki and Figgins… Ouch. Peguero isn’t good by any means, but I see no real harm in Jaso/Peguero as C/DH as opposed to Olivo/Jaso for the next few days before the break.

    Again, if Peguero starts playing regularly over Wells or Saunders or Montero when he’s healthy, then by all means, rip this move. But for now, I think it makes perfect sense.

  9. Mike Snow on July 5th, 2012 1:41 pm

    I think you have to at least somewhat separate the “hot hand” in the context of a manager making out that day’s lineup in the majors from the question of deciding when and whom to promote from one level to the next. In dealing with young players who are still developing their full talents, a stretch of superior performance can indicate that they’ve taken a step forward and are ready for that promotion. That aligns well with the current front office’s approach of having players “earn” their promotions and is certainly preferable to the Bavasi “rush them so they will experience failure” philosophy.

    In that sense, ultimately it comes down to what your evaluation of the player’s true talent potential is. Last year, when Ackley turned it on in Tacoma after a slow start, nobody was clamoring to keep him down until his performance regressed to whatever “normal” is. Nobody will do it for Hultzen either, once he starts figuring out AAA hitters.

    That being said, I would agree that the organization does on some fundamental level believe in the hot hand in ways that are not justified by the evidence. Wedge in particular of course, but it’s not just him. To the question of how involved he is, by all accounts he discusses roster management with the front office on an ongoing basis. I’m sure his input is sought and respected, there’s a certain amount of collaboration involved, and ultimately Zduriencik makes the final decision. That’s all fine and appropriate, the problem would be if he decides that for some reason Peguero should start all three games in Oakland.

    I would add that this front office has shown at least some understanding of when a run of extraordinary performance is not sustainable. It may not have panned out all that much, but they knew when to trade Jarrod Washburn.

  10. PinedaExpress on July 5th, 2012 2:20 pm

    Noesi wasn’t going to make another start prior to the break, the bench needed another bat before Montero took the foul ball off his mask yesterday. I doubt you’ll see Peguero in there against either Blackley or Millone, but I think there’s a good chance he starts Sunday against Jarrod Parker. If Montero can’t go, there’s a chance they start him in there against a lefty too. The other alternatives are Kawasaki or Figgins or your backup catcher at Dh.

  11. vetted_coach on July 5th, 2012 2:49 pm

    I’d rather see Peguero hit for a while other than Olivo at DH, and having a left handed option off the bench for 7-10 days can’t be all bad either. In any case, Gutierrez will indeed be back at some point, so we’ll have even more drama given the at-bats that we’re sure to see in the meantime from Mr. Smoak. Can Peguero possibly be any worse than that guy has been? (And then there’s Carp, due to complicate the scene at about the same time.). Queue the calliope…

  12. just a fan on July 5th, 2012 2:56 pm

    I was surprised they called up another pitcher instead of Peguero when Erasmo hit the DL.

    Liddi, Triunfel and Robinson are the other 40-man guys in Tacoma. You could argue Liddi might make more sense. But if this move is meant primarily for the bench, then Liddi needs all the playing time in Tacoma he can get given his earlier acquaintance with the Seattle bench.

    Might as well see what ol’ Peggy can do.

  13. TheMightyMariner on July 5th, 2012 3:27 pm

    Noesi has struggled. Maybe he can work out some stuff in the minors. Mariner offence is awful and they are painful to watch right now. I have no problems with adding Pegs. It is something to talk about and he might hit the odd tater etc.

    Honestly, the M’s have been so tough to watch that I don’t care who is up or down right now. πŸ™ A bit of a negative take but we’ve stunk for so long…it hurts!

  14. Slats on July 5th, 2012 3:50 pm

    Give Peggy a shot at 1B! Surely he can’t be worse than Smoak.

    A lot more entertaining too.

  15. MrZDevotee on July 5th, 2012 3:56 pm

    Seems like Wedge is finally embracing this team’s approach…

    If NOBODY is gonna hit, at least make the K’s as interesting/entertaining as possible… The clouds actually speed up when Peggy swings and misses. There’ll be a pool to see who swings at the worst pitch, between Peggy, Smoak, Ryan, and Olivo. Winner takes all. (Just don’t tell the league there’s a bounty fund for when Peggy kills the ball– or knocks it out of commission)

  16. Paddy on July 5th, 2012 4:09 pm

    I really hope Bevan does not get called back up. I think both Noesi and Bevan should stay in Tacoma.I understand the long term upside with a guy like Noesi, but those middle in belt high fastballs are getting very old to watch (given up 20HR already). Bevan is at his best a 4-5 guy. He has a cool story, but I just don’t think he can sustain more then a month or two of success in the bigs. The M’s with out those two are a better team for the time being.

  17. henryv on July 5th, 2012 4:26 pm

    I was going to make a rational post about how this makes me slightly concerned about Guti’s concussion, as they have a tendency to linger, and sometimes 7 days can become weeks.

    However, than this happened:

    Give Peggy a shot at 1B! Surely he can’t be worse than Smoak.

    And then I had visions of Peguero trying to catch a dozen or more balls a game, and that ending with Peguero being put on the DL with a Beltre-esque ruptured testicle, or Ichiro ending up on the DL with a repetitive stress after having to chase down balls that went down the right field line after Peguero tried to hit them with his glove.

    Brilliant. Let’s do it.

  18. terryoftacoma on July 5th, 2012 4:28 pm

    This move doesn’t surprise me at all. It would appear instead of putting Montero on the DL, they’ll just rest him until after the All-Star break. Wouldn’t surprise me to see Peggy DH all three games in Oakland(although it might be smarter to go with Figgins VS the left handers)

    Generally, speaking GM’s make the strategic personnel moves and the manager makes the tactical on fields moves with imput as to his needs. So a manager plays a part but it’s the GM that decides these moves.

  19. greentunic on July 5th, 2012 4:30 pm

    This move will not make or break the Mariners by any stretch of the imagination. Im just looking forward to seeing more at bats fron our potential core. Thats pretty much all Ive been focused on this season. The future core of hitters and pitchers. I just want Smoak, Montero, and Ackley to improve. Its not fair that they’re all experiencing massive struggles. Haha.

  20. The_Waco_Kid on July 5th, 2012 4:55 pm

    Peg could help our offense, for now. I bet he can hit better than most of our guys have lately. But he better DH.

  21. thurston24 on July 5th, 2012 5:40 pm

    I wish Hultzen would hurry up and figure it out so he can come up and into the rotation. It would solve so many problems.

  22. casey on July 5th, 2012 5:47 pm

    I know the home / away splits has been a stat that has been worn out a bit. But spent some time checking out the stats and to a player the splits are ridiculous. Each of Ackley, Montero, Seager, Saunders,Smoak and even Ichiro look more like the players we expect with their road stats. Saunders and Seager are monsters on the road. At home they are like 50% versions of the themselves. Checked Ackley for 2011 and same was true. So in average ballpark they are the players we expect … the other 50% of the time they are noodle bat swinging versions of themselves. This is much more than move the fences in type discussion.

  23. casey on July 5th, 2012 6:13 pm

    not to beat a dead horse but I hear lots of people (I do listen to KIRO) talking about what a disappointment our young players have been. Bad choices the lot of them – they can’t hit. Write them off. They need to be punished and sent to minors to learn to hit. Well in every park but Safeco they can hit – extrapolate their 1/2 season road stats to full season and you get:

    Ackley .256 40 doubles 16 homers 100 runs 24 steals
    Montero .279 20 homers 60 rbis
    Saunders .302 50 doubles 20 homers 35 steals 95 runs
    Seager .316 48 doubles 24 homers 120 rbis 12 steals .560 slg
    Smoak .239 30 homers 80 rbis 60 walks
    Ichiro .302 32 doubles 12 homers 100 runs scored 28 steals

    a pretty decent offence with this bunch – just need to give up on them and trade them to a ballpark where they can hit

  24. Mariners35 on July 5th, 2012 6:38 pm

    Casey – Yes, extrapolate the 1st half away stats to what these guys could actually hit, because Safeco’s fences are what are preventing them from getting a ball out of the infield. The heavy sea air is helping their groundballs find defenders. Maritime crosswinds are making Ackley look at strike 3 called on the outside edge, or Smoak swing and whiff, or Montero have one good swing out of 5 or 6 in an AB. It’s the park. Yep.

  25. djw on July 5th, 2012 6:41 pm

    I’ve been dreading the “Peguero up” story for a long time. Each day I see another HR in the Tacoma box score I cringe a little. So depressing.

  26. casey on July 5th, 2012 7:14 pm

    If I was going to trade for one of these guys I would want to look at the away stats – would give me a good idea of what you might expect outside of Safeco – but like you say Mariners 35 could all be just a coincidence and they are just bad players. I think interesting our pitchers on the road:

    Furbush 2.25 era
    Felix 4.18 era
    Kelly 3.86 era
    League 3.44 era
    Millwood 3.1 era
    Vargas 5.70 era
    Noesi 7.42 era
    Wilhelmsen 2.31

    Just the opposite of our hitters Safeco turns our pitchers in to Kings!

    I continue to say that Beltre’s years at Safeco have likely cost him hall of fame numbers.

  27. Paul B on July 5th, 2012 7:44 pm

    I really doubt Beltre was going to make the Hall anyway. Or, if he did, he’d be a borderline candidate, like Santo.

    I’m not commenting on whether he should be in, just on his chance of being voted in.

    I wonder when the M’s will actually need a 5th starter again. Looks like July 17.

  28. casey on July 5th, 2012 8:25 pm

    Beltre came to Seattle as a 26 year old coming off a .334 48 homer season playing in pitcher’s ball park in LA. He spent 5 seasons – his prime seasons hitting half his games in Safeco and never OPS’ed more than .800 in that time. Then as a 31 year old he escaped to Fenway where he hit .321 with 49 doubles and 102 rbis. He has done similar as he moves towards mid-30’s in Texas the last 2 years. Doesn’t take much to imagine what the very average 5 years might have been if say he had picked Toronto or the Yankees over Seattle. Think his legacy would be considerably different.

    I think going forward we have to be realistic about the offensive numbers for players like Ackley and Montero if they are going to play 1/2 their games at Safeco. Expecting him to be Wade Boggs is probably not realistic anywhere short of trading him to the Red Sox. And thinking that Jack Z knows this – but a tough message for the fan who is looking for Mike Trout numbers

  29. vetted_coach on July 5th, 2012 8:42 pm

    Here’s a serious pivot: whatever the Mariners do with personnel in minor league moves and/or trades in July and forward, if they don’t start shaping themselves into a more functional club that looks like it’s heading toward competitive contension by 2014 or before, there is a serious possibility of losing Felix Hernandez.

    He is a FA in 2014, and there is no way that he and his agent will consider re-signing if the team is still floundering to define itself next year. In addition, it could very well behoove the FO to trade Felix before his free agrency is an issue. They may feel he is the best commodity with which to attain the talent that they have not really succeeded in developing, and waiting past 2013 reduces their leverage a great deal.

    Some of these guys need to turn it around soon or else a July/August trade has to reap some evidence of improvement. Perhaps both. In either case, if the team is not offensively competitive pretty soon, the Felix Hernandez window may close.

  30. casey on July 5th, 2012 9:03 pm

    Continuing with my line of thinking I am arguing our offence is not all that bad and will mature as the young guys mature. We score runs on the road (our young guys perform exactly as they are projected to on the road), going forward we should score more runs at home.

    Rather I think we need to recognize that winning in this park means winning a lot of 2-1 games instead of losing them 4-2 like we did on Wednesday. Felix is the foundation, and our bullpen is pretty solid, after that I don’t think we can get Hultzen, Paxton and Walker to the majors soon enough.

    And if we are buying in the off-season I would prefer we are buying a quality starting pitcher – most starters would be licking their mlb career chops to be making 16 starts at Safeco.

  31. henryv on July 5th, 2012 11:46 pm

    Personally, I would like Peguero to get some catching tips from Olivo, and put him behind the plate.

  32. raul_podzednick on July 6th, 2012 9:45 am

    I do want to see someone hit the ball clean out of Safeco and Peguero has about the best chance of anyone on the squad.

  33. eponymous coward on July 6th, 2012 9:47 am

    I’ll bet $50 on “irrational attachment”. Wedge does love his aggressive dinger hitting players.

  34. Westside guy on July 6th, 2012 12:57 pm

    We’ll know tonight!

  35. Mariners35 on July 6th, 2012 1:43 pm

    Put Peguero at 1b and bench Smoak through the weekend. Then send Smoak to AAA when Carp comes back, and DH Peguero a couple times a week (whenever Wedge would be tempted to DH Olivo, basically).

  36. groundzero55 on July 6th, 2012 2:44 pm

    Well eponymous, the irrational attachment begins. Peguero starting in RF today.

  37. Westside guy on July 6th, 2012 2:53 pm


    I guess we set our expectations low, and try to enjoy the game in the same way one might enjoy watching a spectacular train wreck.

  38. Westside guy on July 6th, 2012 3:12 pm

    Okay, right now I want to say I shouldn’t have overreacted to the choices Wedge made for one game. One lineup doesn’t say much, and maybe Wedge wanted to give Ichiro a break.

    Try to ignore most of the preceding post I made, in other words. πŸ˜‰ But the train wreck analogy may still end up being a good one.

  39. Mike Snow on July 6th, 2012 3:21 pm

    Considering that the alternatives are Montero (unavailable), Jaso (the only backup catcher, same platoon disadvantage as Peguero), Kawasaki (ha!), and Figgins (who are we kidding), it’s still not the end of the world. Clearly Ichiro would be a better defender in right, but if Wedge wants to rest his legs for a night that’s fine. Now if Peguero was taking a spot from Wells or Saunders, that would be a problem.

  40. bongo on July 7th, 2012 7:24 pm

    Sending Noesi down seems logical enough. Peguero leads the Rainiers in OPS, so I guess that’s why he was brought up, but his numbers are inflated by the lowered fences at Cheney more than other deserving players. Personally, I would have preferred to see Darren Ford get a shot, given his way lower strikeout rate and higher OBP. Also, I’m wondering how much longer the Mariners should carry Olivo (who could be replaced by PCL All-Star Quiroz) and Kawasaki (who could be replaced by Rodriguez).

  41. bongo on July 7th, 2012 7:26 pm

    Mariners35: It would not surprise me if Smoak were to be sent down when Carp comes up. But Peguero at 1B is not credible. Even Liddi would do a better job.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.