Friday, May 30, 2008

What the Ort? Horwitz Called Up

Oddly enough, after Aaron Rowand took a pitch off his hand, a Giants outfielder was placed on the DL today but it wasn't him: Dan Ortmeier was placed on the 15 day DL but will probably be out for up to 4 weeks. Me thinks he's beginning to be the position player equivalent of Kirk Ainsworth: he missed critical playing time last year when he was suppose to play in the AFL, plus had a couple of injuries in a season to basically waste his first year in AA, and now this. Hopefully this will give him time to recover his batting stroke during his rehab, plus I think that he's still got an option so they might keep him in AAA to get regular play and get his stroke going.

To take his place, the Giants called up OF Brian Horwitz. With no spots on the 40 man roster, the Giants moved Noah Lowry to the 60 day DL (which he's pretty much is at now anyhow) in order to call him up. The 25 year old righty Horwitz is a Cal grad (Go Bears!) who won batting titles in the Northwest League in 2004 with a .347 batting average (.347/.394/.466/.860) and in the Sally League in 2005 with a .349 batting average (.349/.415/.460/.875). He followed that up with hitting .297/381/.376/.757 for three different levels in 2006, traversing from San Jose (.324/.414/.425/.839) to Connecticut to Fresno.

The scouting reports are not kind to Horwitz. He doesn't hit homers or for power, nor does he have any discernable speed, and he doesn't play good defense. But dang if he doesn't know how to hit. And he's actually started hitting for homers this season, he has 5 homers in 130 AB or 26 AB/HR, while hitting .300/.350/.454/.803, MLE equivalent of .260/.303/.377/.680, which is not that good but serviceable for a backup bench player, as that translate to 4 homers in 133 AB or 33 AB/HR. Plus, our team has been struggling against LHP, so he might help out there as a righty, he can play 1B as well as LF.

I'm looking forward to see how well he can do. How can you not love that he has two, not one but two, batting titles, albeit at the lowest levels. Hopefully he will get to play more than Ortmeier has so that we can see what he can do before Ortmeier returns.

I wonder what is going to happen when Lowry returns from the DL, they will have to clear a spot on the 40 man roster for him to return. Then again who knows when he's coming back, it has been so long that I've forgotten about him a bit, particularly in light of how well his replacements have done.

Go Giants!

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