2011 Rays Projections: John Jaso

January 31, 2011 at 7:54 am 2 comments

John Jaso

Before the April of 2010 most people, Rays fans included, did not know who John Jaso was. And some of the people who did know who he was probably never thought he would be a Major League starting catcher, especially not for an AL East contender. Well, Jaso proved a lot of people wrong and has become a huge fan favorite for his hustle and style of play in Tampa Bay.

Jaso will open the 2011 season as the Rays starting catcher and most likely get all the leadoff at-bats against right-handed pitchers since Jaso led all Major Leaguers with a .380 OBP from the leadoff spot last year.

Some people may think that Jaso caught the league by surprise, which he did, but they may project a major decline thinking Jaso’s 2nd time around the league will be tougher than his first. I beg to differ. Here are my 2011 projections for Jaso:

 Stat  Total
 AVG  .271
 OBP  .367
 SLG  .377
 OPS  .744
 Plate App.  547
 At-Bats  454
 Hits  123
 Homeruns  6
 Doubles  24
 Triples  3
 BB  73
 SO  59
 SB  5
 UZR  -3


Jaso possesses a few skills that help transgress digression: patience, great eye, and firm grasp of the strike zone. We are not talking about some rookie that got lucky last year, although there are people that probably believe that is exactly what happened. Jaso has always possessed these skills and I see no reason why he cannot duplicate his 2010 season and have as much of a shot of outperforming it as he does underperforming it.

I do feel that I may be underestimating Jaso but I cannot put too much emotion, or gut, into these projections but I see no reason outside of injury that Jaso cannot put up these projected numbers and produce 2.6-2.9 fWAR or more.

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