Tuesday, November 23, 2010

What's the fascination with, and who is, Jarrod Saltalamacchia?

I keep trying to figure out what everyone see's in this kid.. I'm not seeing any "Eye Opening" statistics from the minors (decent but not spectacular).. Let's say I'm not seeing what the Scouts & Theo Epstein are seeing (not yet anyway).. So, lets take a look at what's out there for info:

Jerrod Saltalamacchia was born on May 2, 1985 in West Palm Beach, Florida. He appears to have played Baseball most of his life and was drafted out of / graduated from Royal Palm Beach High School in Palm Beach County, Florida (see picture of Florida to the right)

Salty was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 1st Round of the 2003 Major League Baseball Draft (36th Overall - Just behind the likes of Delmon Young (1st Overall to TB), Rickie Weeks (2nd Overall to Milwaukee), Nick Markakis (7th Overall to Baltimore), Lastings Milledge (12th Overall to NYM), Aaron Hill (13th Overall to Toronto), David Murphy (17th Overall to Boston), Chad Cordero (20th Overall to Montreal), David Aardsma (22nd Overall to Gianst by way of Houston), Chad Billingsly (24th Overall to LAD), Carlos Quentin (29th Overall to AZ) and Matt Murton (32nd Overall to Boston) and ahead of the likes of Ryan Sweeney (#52nd Overall/2nd Round #15 to CWS), Andre Ethier (62nd Overall/2nd Round #25 to Oakland), Chris Ray (74th Overall/3rd Round #7 to Baltimore) and Ryan Garko (78th Overall/3rd Round #11).. So you can see that allot of the great talent came out of the 1st Round and limited talent fron 2nd to 3rd.. Salty seems to be at the drop-off point in the 1st where the talent dropped quickly into the 2nd).

He's a big kid, has some great size for a Catcher, at 6' 4" / 200lbs.. Saltalamacchia is also a Switch-Hitting Catcher known mainly for his Minor League Offense and solid catching ability with a career .985 Fielding Percentage and a 24% Caught Stealing percentage. (see his full offensive stats below)

2003 18 Braves GULF Rk ATL 46 165 134 23 32 11 2 2 14 0 0 28 33 .239 .382 .396 .777 53
2004 19 Rome SALL A ATL 91 366 323 42 88 19 2 10 51 1 0 34 83 0.272 .348 .437 .784 141
2005 20 Myrtle Beach CARL A+ ATL 129 529 459 70 144 35 1 19 81 4 2 57 99 .314 .394 .519 .912 238
2006 21 Mississippi SOUL AA ATL 92 377 313 30 72 18 1 9 39 0 1 55 71 .230 .353 .380 .733 119
2007 22 Mississippi SOUL AA ATL 22 94 81 18 25 7 0 6 13 2 0 13 17 .309 .404 .617 1.022 50
2008 23 Oklahoma PCL AAA TEX 15 64 55 10 16 3 1 2 13 0 0 7 15 .291 .391 .491 .882 27
2009 24 Frisco TL AA TEX 2 6 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 .000 .333 .000 .333 0
2010 25 2 Teams 2 Lgs AAA TX/BS 72 310 274 42 68 16 2 12 39 1 0 29 69 .248 .329 .453 .782 124
2010 25 Oklahoma City PCL AAA TEX 63 270 238 37 58 11 2 11 33 1 0 25 60 .244 .326 .445 .771 106
2010 25 Pawtucket IL AAA BOS 9 40 36 5 10 5 0 1 6 0 0 4 9 .278 .350 .500 .850 18
Tot Tot Tot Tot Tot Tot 469 1911 1643 236 445 109 9 60 250 8 3 224 388 .271 .366 .458 .823 752
AA AA AA AA AA AA 116 477 398 49 97 25 1 15 52 2 1 69 89 .244 .363 .425 .787 169
AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA AAA 87 374 329 52 84 19 3 14 52 1 0 36 84 .255 .340 .459 .799 151
A A A A A A 91 366 323 42 88 19 2 10 51 1 0 34 83 .272 .348 .437 .784 141
Rk Rk Rk Rk Rk Rk 46 165 134 23 32 11 2 2 14 0 0 28 33 .239 .382 .396 .777 53
A+ A+ A+ A+ A+ A+ 129 529 459 70 144 35 1 19 81 4 2 57 99 .314 .394 .519 .912 238

This, all per Wikipedia, gives a little history on Salty through his Major League years:

  • According to Wikipedia "On May 6, 2007, Saltalamacchia had the first hit of his major league career in the sixth inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers. In the seventh inning, with two outs and two men on base, Saltalamacchia got his first RBI, which also drove in the winning run for the Braves. On May 27, 2007, Saltalamacchia hit his first major league home run, a solo shot off Cole Hamels of the Philadelphia Phillies. On June 26 in a start at first base, Saltalamacchia had his first multi-home run game. Both blasts came batting right-handed off Washington Nationals pitcher Mike Bacsik."
  • On August 22, 2007, With the Texas Rangers, Saltalamacchia had two home runs and seven RBIs in the historic 30-3 rout of the Baltimore Orioles.
  • After the Rangers signed free agent Andruw Jones, Saltalamacchia gave up his number 25 to Jones (for a payment of $ 25,000) and selected the number 21.
  • Saltalamacchia suffered a shoulder injury, while with Texas, on August 15, 2009 and was placed on the disabled list (which ended his season - this all after he lost his starting job to Gerald Laird).
  • Saltalamacchia was eventually placed on the disabled list after the 2nd game of the 2010 season. On April 27, 2010, Saltalamacchia was removed from the DL and assigned to the Oklahoma City RedHawks.[9] He has struggled with throwing the ball back to the pitcher.
  • Saltalamacchia was traded to the Boston Red Sox just before the Major League Baseball trading deadline on July 31, 2010. The Rangers received minor league prospects Chris McGuinness, Ramon Mendez, a player to be named later (Michael Thomas), and cash.
  • He already has the record for the "Longest Last Name" in the Majors (according to wikipedia).

Personal data via Wikipedia:

  • Saltalamacchia is married to a former teacher from his high school, Ashley Saltalamacchia (who is 16 years his senior).[13] Saltalamacchia and his former Rangers teammate, Kason Gabbard, were childhood friends. Both were traded to the Rangers from different teams on July 31, 2007.[14] They were nearly potential teammates once again when the Red Sox, having reacquired Gabbard in 2009, released him from their farm system into free agency on July 24, 2010, exactly one week before Saltalamacchia was traded to Boston. [15]
  • Saltalamacchia taught at Bucky Dent Baseball Camp in Delray Beach, Florida. Saltalamacchia was an instructor for a special catcher's program. He lives in Wellington, Florida.

  • He has a tattoo on both of his forearms, one reading 'Sidney' and the other reading 'Hunter', in recognition of his two kids. He also has a tattoo that reads 'Salty' on his upper left arm. He has a tattoo on his left ring finger, honoring his marriage to his wife Ashley. He also has a tattoo of an immense bald eagle on his upper chest, representing his love of America. Saltalamacchia has seven tattoos.

Other Misc. Info that I scoured the Net for on Salty:

NOT MUCH! There's not allot of info out there on Salty.. I was able to find a photo of his wife at a Rangers event called "The Battle of the Sexes". She's the one at the microphone (the couple walking stage right are Michael Young and his wife Christina Barbosa. The young ladies to Ashley Saltalamacchia's left are Tess Kinsler and Anrea Byrd (man, does it ever pay to be a Major League Baseball Player, aye? hahaha).. This picture, and info, was found at the following URL: http://www.talk-sports.net/mlb/girlfriend.aspx/Jarrod_Saltalamacchia ...

Here's a little more info on Ashley and their marriage: "Ashley Dale Perry (now Saltalamacchia) went to Stetson University in Florida and graduated from college in 1993. She's 16 years older than him and was a teacher at his high school. She claims they didn't date back then (of course because he was underage) which is true if you define dating in the traditional sense. They did hook up on a regular basis when he was in high school. Everyone knew it. He was one of the top hs baseball players in the country back then and she followed him everywhere. She was married to a man she later claimed was gay and divorced him in time to cash in on Jarrod's million dollar signing bonus. They married on a weekday when he was in the lower minor leagues and he played a game that night. Jarrod is 25 years old now so you do the math. ".. Ouch, But Interesting bit of info from someone who is obviously jealous.. That bit of info came from the same web page as the picture (not sure if it's true or not).. Honestly? I could care less if he was a lover of his High School teacher (let's face it, most guys fantasized about having relations with their good looking teachers in high school.. Girls did the same thing.. It's natural.. The fact that they stuck together, that he didn't dump her for a younger woman, shows me he's committed (or should be committed, haha) and that he loves her.. Good for him! That's loyalty! We know that much about him at least!

On Salty's "Injuries" (Thumb, Leg Infection, Shoulder etc) per a NESN Article: "After 84 games in 2009 Saltalamacchia had Thoracic Outlet surgery, ending that campaign and creating the possible cause for throwing issues that caused Texas to send him to the minors the following season to work on the simple things, such as getting the ball back to the pitcher. The yips appear to be a thing of the past but the whole charade sent Saltalamacchia back to the drawing board and eventually to his third organization in four years. He played 10 games with the Red Sox last year, hitting just .158 before shutting it down to have thumb surgery. He also had back problems with the Rangers and spent time on the disabled list shortly after arriving in Boston with a mysterious leg infection."

Also, on September 28, 2010, According to Daniel Barbarisi of the Providence Journal, Jarrod Saltalamacchia underwent successful surgery on his thumb (Saltalamacchia needed a torn ligament repaired, and the procedure went well. He should be fully healthy by the time spring training rolls around) Tuesday (according to this URL: http://ownersedge.fanball.com/mlb/player/6449/notes).

And, on August 27, 2010 Salty begin a rehab assignment with Triple-A Pawtucket on Friday, according to the Boston Globe, after a mysterious infection popped up in his leg. According to Ownersedge.com: "No one seems to know how he got the infection or what it is, and doctors seem to think the only way to find out is to operate. Still, the surgery is apparently not a medical necessity, and if he continues to recover he could go out on a minor league rehab assignment Thursday.". He also admitted that doctors have discussed operating on the Leg - not sure if they did so or not.

** This "Mysterious Leg Infection" sounds an awful lot like an issue resulting from a dirty needle of some sort.. Since allot of athletes that use PEDS shoot up in the buttock/upper thigh/groin region it only makes sense that an infections would be in the leg 1st (that's the direction the blood would flow first as far as I know).. Could be from a steriod or GHG or some other designer type of PED.. Who knows? I don't want to out him or make false accusations but there's not many medical "Mysteries" left and for big money players and agencies the mysteries are tackled allot more thoroughly than with an average Joe like myself.. Take what I say with a grain of salt and don't jump to conclusions.. Just think about it.. Read between the lines of the real media articles and think..

This is all I have on him.. I could look a little more, and probably will, and if something is found I'll post it to a new article as a follow up..

Thanks for reading..