My beloved Tampa Bay Rays have traded John Jaso. It’s sad news and I’m heartbroken, seriously very devastated. I loved him. He’s the first catcher the Tampa Bay Rays have had that I liked and now he’s gone…to Seattle…that sucks.
Not familiar with John Jaso? First, I should slap you for not being a Tampa Bay Rays fan and if you are a Red Sox fan I should slap you four times and if you are a Yankees fan, well, then I should slap you ten times (or worse). Rivalries…what can I say? Anyway…here’s a quick background on John Jaso…
John Edward Jaso (born September 19, 1983, in Chula Vista, California) is a Major League Baseball catcher for the Seattle Mariners. Jaso graduated from McKinleyville High School in McKinleyville, California, in 2001. He attended Southwestern Community College in 2003, and was originally drafted by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the 12th round (338th overall) of the 2003 Major League Baseball Draft. Jaso began his professional career playing for the Low Single-A Hudson Valley Renegades for two seasons from 2003 to 2004. He had a .221 batting average in 2003, but improved to .302 in 2004 and was also a postseason All-Star for that season. He took the next step in 2005, playing for the Single-A Southwest Michigan Devil Rays. He had a .307 batting average and had 14 home runs, his most of any season to date. Also, he was a midseason and postseason All-Star. In 2006, he took another step, playing for the High Single-A Visalia Oaks and his season included being named to the midseason All-Star team. In 2007, he played for the Double-A Montgomery Biscuits. His .316 batting average was second in the Southern League, on base percentage of .408 was third among league leaders and a slugging percentage of .484 was good enough for sixth in the league. His best minor league season included being named to the midseason and postseason All-Star team and was also Topps Southern League Player of the Month for August. Baseball America and Topps also named him as a Double-A All-Star after the season. The Tampa Bay Rays purchased Jaso’s contract on November 20, 2007, protecting him from the Rule 5 Draft. He made his major league debut on September 6, 2008. In November of 2011 he was traded from the Tampa Bay Rays to the Seattle Mariners.
More info than you wanted? Probably and I’m sorry (not really) for that, I just copied and pasted it from my GetGlue biography on him. More importantly than any of that though is that he was a switch-hitting catcher with consistency at the bat who was on base steadily enough that Madden had him hitting lead-off! Who else can say that about their catcher?! Yes, I KNOW he had an off-season offensively and yes I KNOW he struggled defensively and yes I KNOW he still needs work but isn’t that why the Rays were signing Molina? Molina could help develop Jaso and work with young pitchers but now we don’t have Jaso anymore and we traded him for a relief pitcher, Josh Lueke, from Seattle. If you ask me Seattle can keep their grungy garbage out there! I know Lueke can throw up to about 96mph but I’ve also heard he struggles with his control so what could is speed if you can’t control it? Ugh. I think we could have got a guy like Lueke for a lot less than Jaso.
So now it looks Lobaton and Molina are going to be our catchers. I can’t say anything about Lobaton, I don’t know enough about him (and yes, I can admit it) but I can say I have high expectations and he better meet them! If not I’ll be hoping and waiting for the day that our minor league catcher Nevin Ashley is ready for the majors.