What Is A Two Way Player In Baseball

Two-way player – Wikipedia

A two-way player is a player who excels at both offense and defense in sports where it is necessary for a player to play both offensive and defense (such as basketball and ice hockey). In sports where a player normally concentrates on offense or defense (such as American football), or on pitching or hitting (such as baseball), a player who decides to perform both is referred to as a hybrid player.

Basketball

A two-way player is a basketball player who thrives on both the offensive and defensive ends of the court. A two-way player is commonly used in the NBA. The NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award has been given to some of the top two-way players in the National Basketball Association (NBA), according to the organization. In their respective careers, Michael Jordan, Hakeem Olajuwon, David Robinson, Kevin Garnett, and Giannis Antetokounmpo are the only Defensive Player of the Year winners who have also won theNBA Most Valuable Player Award (MVP); Jordan, Olajuwon, and Antetokounmpo all won both awards in the same season.

Hockey

In the National Hockey League (NHL), the phrase “two-way forward” refers to a forward who is responsible for both the defensive and offensive sides of the game at the same time. The Frank J. Selke Trophy is awarded to the player who performs the greatest two-way forward. Defensemen who also contribute on attack are referred to as “two-way defensemen,” or “two-way players.”

Baseball

The term “utility player” refers to someone who plays many defensive positions other than pitcher (baseball).

Background

As a result, there are few real two-way players in Major League Baseball (MLB), as position players are rarely called upon to pitch and the majority of pitchers are below-average batters. The two-way player has virtually vanished from baseball, particularly in the American League, where the designated hitter (DH) rule allows a team to have a designated batter bat in lieu of the pitcher on any given day. When playing in the National League, pitchers are still required to bat for themselves, but they are often mediocre batters.

Pitchers had an average batting average of.124, which was much lower than the league average of.238.

Two-way players are still common in college baseball, with the John Olerud Award being awarded to the player who performs the best on both sides of the ball during the season.

From the 2020 season onward, the term “two-way player” will be recognized as an official MLB roster designation.

  • At least 20 MLB innings pitched
  • Being a position player or designated hitter in at least 20 Major League Baseball games, with at least three plate appearances in each of the 20 games

Once a player qualifies, he keeps his two-way status for the balance of the current season as well as the entirety of the following season after that. A team’s active roster cannot contain more than 13 pitchers (14 for regular-season games after September 1), and two-way players are exempt from the 13-pitch limit (14 for regular-season games after September 1) imposed in 2020, nor are they subject to the pitching restrictions imposed on position players in 2020. Only statistics from the 2018 or 2019 seasons may be utilized to determine if a player was eligible for two-way eligibility in the 2020 season.

This permitted theLos Angeles Angels to designate Shohei Ohtani as a two-way player in 2020, despite the fact that he did not pitch in 2019 while recovering from Tommy John surgery.

Recent players

Brendan McKay was drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2017 as a two-way player and began developing him as a pitcher and first baseman. He made his Major League Baseball debut as a pitcher and designated hitter during the Rays’ 2019 season. Shohei Ohtani, a two-way player who can play both pitcher and outfield, made the transition from Nippon Professional Baseball to Major League Baseball in 2018 and became one of the few players in the world who can both bat and pitch professionally. On days when he does not pitch, he has been utilized as a designated hitter (DH).

  1. Two years later, in 2021, Ohtani became the first player in history to be selected to the Major League Baseball All-Star game as both a pitcher and a designated hitter.
  2. Micheal Lorenzen, a former two-way player at Cal State Fullerton, has been a bullpen pitcher for the Cincinnati Reds since 2011.
  3. Lorenzen has also seen action in the outfield since the start of the 2019 season.
  4. Other big league teams have begun to experiment with some of their top prospects as two-way players, like Anthony Gose, Brett Eibner, and Trey Ball, among others.

List of notable two-way baseball players

Player League Team(s) Years as two-way player Wins Losses ERA Batting average HRs RBI Notes
Nixey Callahan MLB Philadelphia PhilliesChicago Colts/OrphansChicago White Sox 1894, 1897–1903 99 73 3.39 .273 11 394 Pitched a no-hitter in 1902
Leon Day Negro leagues Baltimore Black SoxBrooklyn/Newark Eagles 1934–1946 67 29 4.51 .285 3 67 MLB Hall of Fame
Martín Dihigo Negro leagues Cuban Stars (East)Homestead GraysHilldale GiantsNew York Cubans 1923–1928, 1930–1931, 1935–1936, 1945 26 19 2.92 .307 64 227 MLB Hall of Fame
Hideo Fujimoto JBL / NPB Tokyo KyojinChunichi DragonsYomiuri Giants 1943–1948 200 87 1.90 .245 15 151 Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame
Fumio Fujimura JBL Osaka Tigers 1936–1938, 1944, 1946, 1948, 1950–1951 34 11 2.43 .300 224 1,126 Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame
Masaru Kageura JBL Osaka Tigers 1936–1938 27 9 1.57 .271 25 222 Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame
Kim Seong-han KBO Haitai Tigers 1982–1983, 1985–1986 15 10 3.02 .286 207 781
Michael Lorenzen MLB Cincinnati Reds 2015–2019 20 21 4.06 .235 7 24
Michio Nishizawa JBL / NPB Nagoya/Sangyo/Chubu Nihon/Nagoya Dragons/Chunichi DragonsGold Star/Kinsei Stars 1937–1943, 1946–1947 60 65 2.23 .286 212 940 Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame
Akira Noguchi JBL / NPB Tokyo Senators / Taiyō / NishitetsuHankyu BravesChunichi/Nagoya Dragons 1936–1937, 1942–1943, 1948 49 40 2.54 .251 61 572 Brother of fellow two-way playerJiro Noguchi
Jiro Noguchi JBL / NPB Tokyo Senators / Tsubasa / Taiyō / NishitetsuHankyu Braves 1939–1943, 1946–1952 237 139 1.96 .248 9 368 Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame
Shohei Ohtani NPB Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters 2013–2017 42 15 2.52 .286 48 166
MLB Los Angeles Angels 2018, 2020, 2021 13 5 3.53 .264 93 247 Won the 2021American League Most Valuable Player Award
Ted Radcliffe Negro leagues Detroit Stars,Chicago American Giants,St. Louis Stars,Homestead Grays,Pittsburgh Crawfords,Columbus Blue Birds,New York Black Yankees,Brooklyn Eagles,Cincinnati Tigers,Memphis Red Sox,Birmingham Black Barons,Homestead Grays 1929–1935, 1937–1939, 1941–1944, 1946 32 30 ? .278 19 97 Known as “Double Duty Radcliffe”
Bullet Rogan Negro leagues Kansas City Monarchs 1920–1929, 1933, 1935, 1937 119 50 3.68 .338 45 199 MLB Hall of Fame
Babe Ruth MLB Boston Red SoxNew York YankeesBoston Braves 1914–1921, 1930, 1933 94 46 2.28 .342 714 2,214 MLB Hall of Fame
Junzo Sekine NPB Kintetsu Pearls 1950–1957 65 94 3.43 .279 59 424 Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame
George Sisler MLB St. Louis Browns 1915–1916 5 6 2.35 .340 102 1,175 MLB Hall of Fame
Willie Smith MLB Detroit TigersLos Angeles AngelsCleveland IndiansChicago Cubs 1963–1964, 1968 2 4 3.10 .248 46 211
Doc White MLB Philadelphia PhilliesChicago White Sox 1902, 1909–1910 189 156 2.39 .217 2 75
Rick Ankiel MLB St. Louis Cardinals 1999–2001, 2004 13 10 3.90 .240 76 251 Ankiel was the first player sinceBabe Ruthto have won 10 or more games in a season, and to hit 50 career home runs.

American football

Most offensive players do not play on defense, and vice versa, in the National Football League (NFL). As a result, there are few two-way players in the NFL. When a player is “overused,” the danger of injury is a big source of concern. Two-way players were more frequent in the NFL’s early years, when the league operated on a one-platoon basis, but they are now becoming increasingly rare. Patrick Ricardiis an example of a recent two-way player in the NFL, having appeared as both a fullback and a defensive lineman for the New York Jets during the 2017 season.

While at UCLA, linebacker Myles Jack also competed as a running back, earning him the Pac-12 Conference’s Offensive and Defensive Freshman Player of the Year awards on both offense and defense.

See also

  • An all-rounder is a cricketer who is equally proficient at batting and bowling.

Notes

  1. Day’s career was marred by poor recordkeeping
  2. League historians estimate that he won as many as 300 games during his tenure. From 1937 to 1943, Nishizawa was largely a pitcher, and from 1946 until the present, he has been predominantly a position player
  3. Noguchi was largely a pitcher from 1936 to 1937 and primarily a position player from 1942 to the present. Biographer Kyle P. McNary estimates that Radcliffe had a.303 batting average, 4,000 hits, and 400 home runs throughout the course of his 36-year baseball career
  4. In his lifetime, according baseball historian Phil Dixon, Rogan won more than 350 games against all competition, including semipro and Army teams, and struck out more than 2000 times. He also hit more than 2500 batters, hit 350 home runs, and stole 500 bases. Smith also spent two seasons with theNankai Hawksof the NPB (in 1972–1973), but he was mostly a position player and barely threw a third of an inning in each of those campaigns.

References

  1. ‘Schuhmann, John’ is an abbreviation for John Schuhmann (August 16, 2017). “Taking a look at the best of the finest two-way players in the NBA right now.” Paine, Neil. NBA.com. Retrieved on January 16, 2019. (July 11, 2016). “A Farewell to Tim Duncan, the Greatest Two-Way Player in Modern NBA History,” the Los Angeles Times said. FiveThirtyEight. Prewitt, Alex (February 24, 2020)
  2. Retrieved February 24, 2020
  3. (October 2, 2019). “Double Duty: The Importance of a Two-Way Forward in Today’s NHL”
  4. Macfarlane, Steve
  5. “Double Duty: The Importance of a Two-Way Forward in Today’s NHL”
  6. (August 27, 2016). “A ranking of the top ten best two-way defensemen in the National Hockey League for the 2016-17 season.” Bleacher Report is a sports news website. “2017 MLB Team Position Performance by BA,” which was retrieved on July 10, 2018
  7. Doug Miller is a writer and a musician (December 6, 2017). “Ottani’s future is being evaluated by ex-two-way prospects.” Major League Baseball’s official website, retrieved on July 11, 2018
  8. Abc”Rule revisions revealed for the 2020 season.” MLB.com has set a date of February 12, 2020. abJustice, Richard (February 12, 2020)
  9. AbJustice, Richard (May 24, 2018). “Shohei Ohtani clears the road for two-way players to advance.” Baseball-Reference.com, retrieved on January 15, 2019
  10. Topkin, Marc (June 29, 2019). In a 5-2 victory, Brendan McKay had an impressive debut for the Rays. The Tampa Bay Times reports that “ex-Blackhawk Brendan McKay went 0 for 4 in his major league debut with the Rays.” DiGiovanna, Mike, and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, published on July 1, 2019. (February 14, 2018). In addition to pitching and serving as a designated hitter, Ohtani will not be permitted to slide head-first into the outfield. The Los Angeles Times published this article. On July 11, 2018, I was able to get a hold of some information. Sam Miller is a writer who lives in the United States (April 3, 2018). “Should Shohei Ohtani remain a two-way player in the future? Babe Ruth and the Boston Red Sox were faced with the same dilemma exactly 100 years earlier “. On July 10, 2018, ESPN.com was able to get the following: David Schoenfield is the author of this work (November 13, 2018). “Shohei Ohtani of the Angels defeats the Yankees’ tandem to earn the American League Rookie of the Year.” “46 home runs, 100 RBIs: Shohei finishes with a dream season,” ESPN.com, accessed July 2, 2019. Rhett Bollinger is a fictional character created by Rhett Bollinger. The date is October 3, 2021. Retrieved on October 4, 2021
  11. “Bryce, Ohtani, a two-time and two-way MVP.” mlb.com, retrieved on November 18, 2021
  12. “Register Players Encyclopedia – Baseball-Reference.com,” retrieved on November 18, 2021
  13. MLB.com, accessed on March 21, 2018
  14. Kram, Zach (September 17, 2019). “The Reds are refining the optimal approach for a two-way player,” according to the team’s official website. The Ringer reports that “Ball is gaining fresh life as a two-way prospect.” The following article was found on MiLB.com on January 15, 2019: “Texas Rangers: How the Rangers obtained Anthony Gose, a two-way talent who can play outfield and pitcher | SportsDay.” Dallas News website, retrieved on January 15, 2019
  15. Sportsday.com. William McNeil is a writer who lives in the United States (2000). Baseball’s other all-stars are the best players from the minor leagues, known as the Negro Leagues. Publisher: McFarland Publishing, p. 67, ISBN: 0-7864-0784-0. Author: James, Michael (1995). Fame discovers Leon Day too late for legend to stroll past the memorial, reports the Los Angeles Times. The New York Daily News published a story about this. McNary, Kyle P.Ted “Double Duty” Radcliffe: 36 Years of Pitching and Catching in Baseball’s Negro Leagues(Minneapolis: McNary Publishing, 1994)
  16. McNary, Kyle P.Ted “Double Duty” Radcliffe: 36 Years of Pitching and Catching in Baseball’s Negro Leagues(Minneapolis: McNary Publishing, 1994)
  17. Dixon, Phil S., et al (2002). The Monarchs reigned from 1920 until 1938. 212
  18. Santorosa, Tony, ed., Sioux Falls: Mariah Press, ISBN 1-893250-08-3, p. 212
  19. (March 8, 2012). All-Time NFL Two-Way Players, according to Pro Football Focus. Bleacher Report is a sports news website. Jamison Hensley, Jamison Hensley, Jamison Hensley (August 23, 2017). “Patrick Ricard is attempting to become the sixth two-way player in the NFL in the last decade.” ESPN.com. Greenawalt, Tyler, et al., eds., retrieved on July 10, 2018. (November 17, 2015). “College football’s two-way players are experiencing a rebirth.” NCAA.com. Foster, Chris (July 11, 2018)
  20. RetrievedJuly 11, 2018
  21. (December 2, 2013). “UCLA freshman Myles Jack has been named Pac-12 Freshman of the Year twice in a row.” The Los Angeles Times published this article. This document was retrieved on July 10, 2018.

External links

  • Mike Duncan is the author of this work. “Shohei Ohtani, The Bambino, and Bullet Joe,” The Hardball Times (April 11, 2018)
  • Jaffe, Jay. “Shohei Ohtani, The Bambino, and Bullet Joe,” The Hardball Times (April 11, 2018). “Shohei Ohtani and Beyond: A History of Double-Duty Players,” FanGraphs (April 6, 2018)
  • “Shohei Ohtani and Beyond: A History of Double-Duty Players,” FanGraphs (April 6, 2018)
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Angels two-way player Shohei Ohtani needs to be continuously celebrated

Because it is already mid-June, we have not written about Shohei Ohtani since the season began, and it is, quite honestly, time for us to do so. It should be praised on a daily basis that Ohtani is one of the most exciting players in baseball, and his distinctiveness in today’s game should be recognized as well. Incredibly, he has played admirably on both sides of the ball, and he has the potential to be a legitimate All-Star at either the pitcher or batter positions; the fact that he is doing admirably at both positions is astounding.

  • Ohtani’s one-of-a-kindness even compelled Major League Baseball to change its rules to exempt two-way players from counting against the maximum number of pitchers allowed on a team’s roster.
  • Ohtani is hitting in his role as a batter.
  • Only one home run separates him from MLB leaders Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
  • The fact that he is hitting home runs at a high rate (almost every other game) and has a 157 WRC+ implies that he is batting 57 percent better than the league average hitter is a testament to his ability.
  • It’s a sacrifice that’s well worth it considering the rest of the value he’s providing.
  • It doesn’t matter how quick he is; he has attempted to grab nine bags, snatching six of them successfully.
  • Following up on our discussion of Ohtani’s outstanding hitting performance thus far this season, let’s take a look at his outstanding performance on the mound.

That equates to a RA9 of 3.25, an ERA of 2.76, and a FIP of 3.60 for the pitcher.

In those 42+ innings, he’s only allowed four home runs, and he’s striking out batters at a rate of more than 34 percent, which is more than 10 percentage points more than the league average for the position.

As we all know, every Major League Baseball team sends a representative to the All-Star Game.

He is well on his approach to earning his first All-Star appearance, regardless of the team’s or roster’s parity, and that should be appreciated.

It would be entertaining if he began off as a position player, moved to the mound, and then returned to his place on the field.

Nothing in the preceding paragraph hasn’t already been said in some form, but Ohtani is a fantastic player, a unique player, and a fun guy who deserves to be recognized and praised.

*** In addition to being an Editor at Beyond the Box Score, Steven Martano works as a Contributing Prospect Writer for the Colorado Rockies at Purple Row and as a contributing writer for The Hardball Times, among other publications. You may follow him on Twitter by using the handle @SMartano.

How the new 2-way-player rule impacts clubs

THE TEMPE, Ariz., UNIVERSITY – A Tuesday morning at the start of spring training, and Jared Walsh was carrying his first baseman’s glove in the gear bag he brought with him to the Angels’ practice fields. Walsh was a position player who was tasked with fielding ground balls on this particular day. The next day, though, he expected to throw a bullpen session in order to prepare his left arm for whatever pitching duties could await him in the coming months. He explained that he alternates between becoming a first baseman and a pitcher.

  • However, starting in 2020, new roster rules will limit the amount of effect guys who are primarily position players – players like Walsh – can have on the mound in the Major Leagues.
  • As an outgrowth of that restriction, the two-way player classification was implemented, which also serves as a means of reining in the rash of position-player pitching incidents that have occurred in recent seasons.
  • As a matter of fact, Ohtani is the only player in Major League Baseball who qualifies as a two-way player during the rule’s first year of application.
  • Position players who will be pitching in a game must be classified as a “two-way player” prior to the start of the game.
  • One of the only circumstances in which a position player who has not been classified as a “two-way player” may pitch in a game are when his team is winning or trailing by at least seven runs, or when the game goes into extra innings.
  • In order to qualify as a two-way player in 2020, MLB has permitted either 2018 or 2019 statistics to go toward the requirement.
  • The same cannot be said for his teammate, Walsh, who did not qualify despite making 87 plate appearances and pitching five innings in his first taste of the majors in 2019.

(He’ll also be hampered by the new three-batter limitation, which will prohibit his imaginative manager Joe Maddon from deploying him to face a lefty, shifting him to first base when a right-hander comes up, then bringing him back to the mound when another lefty comes up.) Despite the fact that Walsh will have little chance of qualifying as a two-way player under the new regulations, the Angels intend to use him in both roles this spring to ensure that he is ready to (literally) pitch when the season begins in April.

  1. The Red Sox manager said he wanted to “touch the surface” of anything that would be considered a little bit of an aberration during Spring Training.
  2. For clubs who have athletes who have the ability to contribute on both sides of the ball, there is undeniable benefit in pursuing the 20-inning, 20-start milestone.
  3. Padres infielder Jake Cronenworth, who they acquired from the Rays as part of their Tommy Pham deal, is expected to contribute to that goal for the team.
  4. In addition, he went 7 and a third innings without allowing a run.
  5. “He possesses a one-of-a-kind ability,” Tingler stated.
  6. We recognize that it isn’t ideal, but we believe that there will be games during the season that are blowouts, and he will have his opportunity.” First and foremost, Cronenworth must be admitted to the club.
  7. In an interview with The Athletic, Tingler stated that the Padres will not attempt to force Cronenworth into games only for the sake of achieving the two-way player standards.

Then Tingler added a smirk, saying, “I hope we’re chasing something other than that objective.” “However, I believe that this is a very serious possibility for teams.” Michael Lorenzen, who enters 2020 as a two-way player in all but the most literal understanding of the word, was a guy the Reds should have pursued last season, but they didn’t.

  1. As a result, he is a valuable late-game asset in a variety of ways.
  2. As a position player last season, Lorenzen participated in 100 games, in addition to pitching 83 1/3 innings and accumulating 83 1/3 innings.
  3. He appeared in 89 more innings in the outfield than he did on the mound, yet he only made 53 trips to the bat.
  4. “They unfairly favor Ohtani because of the DH predicament that he’s in.” DH, by its very nature, makes it much simpler to get those at-bats on the board.
  5. As a result, I hope they reconsider the criteria.
  6. Lorenzen, on the other hand, was even more dissatisfied.
  7. “I don’t see why I’m not considered a two-way player,” he remarked.

“Perhaps one day.” Regardless, Lorenzen is looking forward to continuing to play a role similar to the one he had in 2019.

As a result, he’ll spend the most of his spring training moving between the outfield and the mound.

It was difficult for them to say, ‘We’re going to use you in all of these positions,’ when they hired a new coaching staff the previous year.” They need to see it for themselves, as well as how my body reacts to it.

15 overall prospect, according to MLB Pipeline, on their major league roster before long, perhaps as early as Opening Day.

McKay made 13 appearances (11 starts) as a pitcher and 11 plate appearances in his first season with the organization.

The John Olerud Award, which is given to the best two-way player in college baseball, has gone to him three times, and he once hit four home runs in a single game while playing for the University of Minnesota.

For now, he’s primarily a pitcher.

McKay, though, hopes to see time at first base and not just be limited to DH duties.

“But I think we have to prioritize the pitching, getting the swings underneath him and see how our roster shakes out and what’s good for him.” When McKay reaches the bigs for good, the Rays will have specific incentive to get him those 20 starts as a position player.

Clearly, reaching that status is not easily done.

“You never know.

“The reality of big league baseball is that, if you play 162 games, there are going to be blowouts,” Walsh said.

So right now, if I can take some innings off the bullpen in a big win or a big loss, there’s value to that.“ Although, if we’re up by 15 every night, I would gladly get my 20 innings!”

MLB Prospect Watch: Six who could follow in Shohei Ohtani’s footsteps as baseball’s next two-way player

THE TEMPE, Ariz., UNIVERSITY – A Tuesday morning towards the beginning of spring training, and Jared Walsh had his first baseman’s glove in the gear bag he took with him to the Angels’ practice fields. Walsh was a position player who was tasked with fielding ground balls on this particular occasion. He was planning to throw a bullpen session the next day, in order to prepare his left arm for whatever pitching assignments he could have in 2020. In his words, “one day I’m a first baseman, and the next I’m a pitcher.” When it comes to communicating with me about what to expect, they do a really excellent job.

Due to the expansion to 26-man rosters, MLB has rightly restricted clubs to carrying no more than 13 pitchers at a time in order to prevent teams from further beefing up their bullpens and turning baseball into an even greater reliever relay race than it already has been.

Known as the “Shohei Ohtani rule,” it will allow the Angels to use Ohtani as a designated hitter and a starting pitcher without having to count him against their 13-man pitching staff.

The following are the prerequisites to be fulfilled: In order to appear as a pitcher without being counted against a team’s pitcher limit, a player must accumulate at least 20 Major League innings pitched AND at least 20 games started (as a position player or designated hitter), with at least three plate appearances in each of those games, in either the current season or the preceding season, respectively.

  • Position players who will be pitching in a game must be classified as “two-way players” before to the game.
  • Only when a position player who is not recognized as a “two-way player” is winning or losing by seven or more runs, or when the game goes into extra innings, may he take the mound for his side.
  • He will not be ready for the Angels until at least May.
  • Walsh, on the other hand, did not qualify despite making 87 plate appearances and pitching five innings in his first taste of the major leagues in the spring of this year.

(He’ll also be hampered by the new three-batter limitation, which will prohibit his imaginative manager Joe Maddon from utilizing him to face a lefty, shifting him to first base when a right-hander comes up, then bringing him back to the mound when another lefty comes up to bat.) However, even though Walsh will have little chance of qualifying as a two-way player under the new rules, the Angels intend to use him in both roles this spring in order to ensure that he is ready to (literally) throw in the majors this year.

  1. The Red Sox manager said he wants to “touch the surface” of anything that would be considered a little bit of an oddity during Spring Training.
  2. In the case of teams with players who have the ability to contribute on both sides of the ball, as it were, pursuing the 20-inning, 20-start record makes intuitive sense.
  3. Padres infielder Jake Cronenworth, who was acquired from the Rays as part of their Tommy Pham deal, is expected to contribute to that goal for the team.
  4. Besides that, he went 7 and a third innings with no runs allowed.
  5. According to Tingler, “He possesses an extraordinary skill.” “As a result, we decided to train him for one inning every week.” The shortstop and second base positions didn’t seem to be affected by his doing it a little bit last year, and we agreed.
  6. It’s then up to the players to create in-game circumstances for them.
  7. The possibility exists that Cronenworth may accumulate 20 innings this season only through mop-up duty, allowing him to qualify as a two-way player in future seasons, but it’s difficult to picture that scenario occurring.

In the case of teams, I believe this to be a realistic scenario.

In addition to being an effective reliever, Lorenzen is a capable defensive outfielder who is projected to fill one of the club’s 13 pitching places in 2020.

In contrast, the two-way player rules are simply unfavorable to a player whose flexibility is applied more on defense than on offense, as seen above.

While there were some offensive contributions, the great bulk of his outings were as a defensive substitute.

When it comes to the new regulation, Reds president of baseball operations Dick Williams expressed his disappointment with the criteria set by the league.

DHS makes it much easier to get those at-bats simply by being there.

Consequently, I hope the requirements be reviewed again.

In addition to playing defense and three outfield positions, he is required to perform a variety of other tasks.

I honestly don’t care at the end of the day, but it would be good to say that I’m on the roster as a two-way player at the very least.” One day, perhaps.” Without a doubt, Lorenzen is approaching 2020 with the expectation of performing in a capacity that is similar to the one he played in 2019.

  • And as a result, he’ll be spending the most of his spring training travelling between the outfield and the pitcher’s mound again.
  • It was difficult for them to say, ‘We’re going to utilize you in all of these positions,’ when they had a new coaching staff last year,” he said.
  • The concern of using me in any circumstance will be eliminated now that we’ve had an entire season together and they have a greater understanding of who I am.
  • 15 overall prospect, according to MLB Pipeline, on their major league roster before long, possibly as early as Opening Day.
  • Last season, McKay made 13 appearances (11 starts) as a pitcher and 11 plate appearances in the field.
  • The John Olerud Award, which is given to the top two-way player in college baseball, has been presented to him three times, and he has hit four home runs in a single game while playing for the University of Minnesota.
  • For the time being, he is predominantly a pitcher.
  • McKay, on the other hand, expects to see action at first base rather than being restricted to DH chores.
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“However, I believe we must prioritize the pitching, get the swings underneath him, and then evaluate how our roster breaks out and what is best for him going forward.” When McKay finally makes it to the big leagues, the Rays will have a special motivation to get him those 20 starts as a position player as soon as possible.

Obviously, achieving that level of success is not simple.

“You never know what’s going to happen.

It’s a fact of life in major league baseball that if you play 162 games, some of them are going to be blowouts, according to Walsh.

Thanks for signing up!

THE TEMPE, Ariz., – It was a Tuesday morning towards the start of spring training, and Jared Walsh had his first baseman’s glove in the gear bag he took with him to the Angels’ practice fields. Walsh was a position player who was responsible for fielding ground balls on this particular day. He was scheduled to throw a bullpen session the next day, in order to prepare his left arm for whatever pitching assignments could await him in 2020. “One day I’m a first baseman, and the next I’m a pitcher,” he explained.

  • The influence that guys who are primarily position players – players like Walsh – may have on the mound will be limited in 2020 as a result of new roster restrictions.
  • The two-way player classification is an extension of that restriction, and it also serves as a means of minimizing the occurrences of position players pitching that have been all too often in recent seasons.
  • As a matter of fact, Ohtani is the only player in Major League Baseball who qualifies as a two-way player in the rule’s first year of application.
  • Position players who will be pitching in a game must be classified as a “two-way player” prior to the game.
  • Only when a position player who is not recognized as a “two-way player” is winning or losing by seven or more runs, or when the game goes into extra innings, may he take the mound.
  • As a DH, Ohtani pitched 51 2/3 innings and made 82 starts in 2018, although MLB permitted either 2018 or 2019 statistics to qualify toward the two-way player qualification for 2020.
  • As a result, if Walsh is still with the Angels in 2020, he will only be able to pitch in games that are already out of hand.

“I want to probe the surface of anything that you could consider a little bit of an oddity in Spring Training,” Maddon said.

For teams who have players who have the ability to contribute on both sides of the ball, as it were, pursuing the 20-inning, 20-start record makes sense.

The Padres are confident that infielder Jake Cronenworth, who they acquired from the Rays in the Tommy Pham deal, can help them get there.

In addition, he pitched 7 and a third innings without allowing a run.

“He possesses a one-of-a-kind skill,” Tingler added.

So it may not be flawless, but we believe that there will be games that are blowouts during the season, and he will have his opportunity.” First and first, Cronenworth must be accepted into the club.

In an interview with ESPN, Tingler stated that the Padres will not attempt to force Cronenworth into games only for the sake of achieving the two-way player standards.

‘I’m hoping we’re not following that particular target,’ Tingler replied with a grin.

Lorenzen is primarily a reliever, and he is expected to take one of the club’s 13 available pitching berths in 2020.

As a result, he becomes a valuable late-game asset in a variety of ways.

Lorenzen played in 100 games as a position player last season, in addition to collecting 83 1/3 innings on the mound.

He played more innings in the outfield (89) than he did on the mound, but he only made 53 trips to the bat.

“They unjustly favor Ohtani’s DH predicament.” DH, by its very nature, makes it much simpler to get those at-bats to come around.

As a result, I hope they review the requirements.

In addition to playing defense and three outfield positions, he was required to perform a variety of other tasks.

I honestly don’t care at the end of the day, but it would be good to say I’m on the roster as a two-way player.” “Perhaps someday.” Regardless, Lorenzen is approaching 2020 with the expectation of continuing to play a role similar to the one he played in 2019.

As a result, he’ll spend the most of his spring training time moving between the outfield and the mound.

Now that we’ve spent a season together and they’ve gotten a greater understanding of me, there will be no hesitation in using me in any circumstance.” The Rays are expected to have left-hander/designated hitterBrendan McKay, baseball’s No.

The Rays’ approach to the two-way player role and rule will likely be the most fascinating to watch.

McKay, the fourth overall pick in the 2017 Draft, was a two-way star for the University of Louisville.

A lot of people felt that the Rays, who have long been recognized for their creativity, saw McKay as a two-way danger in the vein of Shohei Ohtani.

The prospect of seeing time at first base rather than simply DH responsibilities excites McKay, who expects to see more time at the position.

The pitching staff must come first, followed by getting the swings under him and determining how our roster will shake out and what will be best for him.

However, because of how the rule is written, it appears as though the Rays would be doing McKay no favors if they used him as the opener and then moved him to first base or designated hitter (DH) for the remainder of the game.

At the moment, just one player qualifies, according to the team’s general manager, David Bell.

” As for the regulation itself, we’ll have to wait and see.” At least for the time being, players like as Walsh, who are confident in their ability to do double duty at the top level, will prepare themselves as best they can for whatever possibilities the new regulation may present.

To be able to work my way into higher-level positions would be a dream come true, but I would have to demonstrate my worth over an extended period of time in order to be considered for such a position.” Now is a good time to see if I can get some innings out of the bullpen, whether it’s in a huge victory or a big defeat.

“However, if we’re up by 15 every night, I’d be happy to get my 20 innings.”

Minor leaguers

Brendan McKay is a right-handed pitcher and first baseman for the Tampa Bay Rays. McKay is the most well-known two-way player this side of Shohei Ohtani, owing to his selection as the fourth overall pick in the 2017 draft. Unluckily, he’s been dealing with a lot of turbulence since making 13 big-league appearances in 2019. (he posted a 5.14 ERA despite solid underlying measures). In the summer of 2016, McKay tested positive for COVID-19, and his season was cut short by a shoulder operation the following year.

  1. In the meantime, it will be interesting to see if McKay’s stuff and command return in full as he continues to rehab; the Rays have expressed an interest in moving him in the past, and they may not have much of a choice if his performance continues to deteriorate.
  2. Louis Cardinals.
  3. Given that he’s hitting just.141/.291/.203 with a 29 percent strikeout rate in his first 79 plate appearances, it’s possible that he won’t throw a single pitch in the first half of the season.
  4. If we can break the kayfabe for a moment, we can say that none of the points above are relevant.
  5. His twentieth birthday will not be celebrated until next March.
  6. Tanner Dodson is a right-handed pitcher/outfielder for the Tampa Bay Rays.
  7. He has two pitches that have the potential to be above-average (his fastball and slider), and he has only walked three batters per nine innings in his professional career so far.
  8. When it comes to relievers, most teams would rush Dodson to the Show as soon as they could.

2021 draftees

Bubba Chandler is a RHP/SS for the North Oconee High School. Handler, a two-sport standout who has committed to play quarterback for Clemson, may be selected in the first round’s top half of the first round. Having an above-average velocity and plenty of projection, he’s considered a top-tier pitching prospect. Whichever team selects Chandler in the first round will almost certainly be satisfied with having him on the mound on a full-time basis. Still, he has enough clout that, if he wants to attempt the two-way street approach, he will almost certainly be able to obtain what he wants in exchange for signing.

Schwellenbach has had a great season on both sides of the ball this year.

The odds are in his favor that he will be selected in the first three rounds or earlier.

HS Williams has committed to the University of California, which is the same institution that Dodson attended.

He possesses the arm strength to play the left side of the infield, without a doubt, but he will most likely have to move away from the shortstop position before reaching the Show.

The rise of the two-way player: Is next Ohtani already out there?

19th of March, 2019

  • Reporter for ESPN’s baseball coverage. From 2016 to 2018, I covered the Los Angeles Rams for ESPN, and from 2012 to 2016, I covered the Los Angeles Angels for MLB.com.

WELCOME TO GOODYEAR, Ariz. – Michael Lorenzen is enraged by the structures that characterize professional baseball, to the point where it keeps him up at night on certain evenings. Lorenzen, a veteran reliever who is also a potential outfielder, loves to claim that his sport’s two favorite phrases are “simply because” and “because I can.” He conveyed his point by reiterating a series of queries for which there are no clear responses. For what reason do we have to wait for 45 minutes outside before every game?

  • What is it about someone who can’t pitch and bat in the major leagues?
  • “Just because,” Lorenzen said.
  • ‘It’s just too difficult.’ Shohei Ohtani is the only person who has the authority to claim that something is too difficult since he is the only person who has completed it.
  • It irritates me to no end.
  • The four-minute mile was insurmountable until it became achievable.
  • He will miss the whole 2019 season while recovering from Tommy John surgery.
  • In his wake has risen a new generation of two-way players with aspirations to succeed him.
  • While Lorenzen is with the Cincinnati Reds, Matt Davidson is with the Texas Rangers and Brendan McKay, the fourth overall pick in 2017, is with the Tampa Bay Rays, both of whom are doing something similar in their respective organizations.

Despite the fact that he was speaking via a translator, Ohtani stated that inspiring others “wasn’t one of my aims,” adding that “it’s a nice thing if others start doing it because of me.” A pattern for how a two-way player may exist in the modern game was laid forth by Ohtani’s performance, which helped to instill a sense of open-mindedness that had previously been lacking in the major leagues.

  1. General manager Billy Eppler stated that “professional sports change and adapt,” which is exactly what has happened in this instance.
  2. For as long as I can remember, I’ve felt that success in business, success in an organization, or whatever you want to call it is having intelligent ideas that you hold on to loosely – meaning it’s OK to change your mind, it’s OK to adapt and develop as you get more information.
  3. Jared Walsh had started the game in left field for the Angels’ Triple-A club and had played in all 10 innings.
  4. Walsh was perplexed by the situation.
  5. However, this occurred in the middle of an inning, which was unusual.
  6. “It was completely insane.” “Professional sports are always evolving and adapting, and that is exactly what is going on here.
  7. Cowart, a high school third baseman who was taken 18th overall in the 2010 MLB Draft, is trying to extend his career with a powerful fastball.

Lorenzen is on the other side of the spectrum, as a seasoned major league reliever who is attempting to make a name for himself as a position player in the American League.

He only contributed as a late-inning reliever due to his ability to throw hard.

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“Having to admit that I was a pitcher was perhaps one of the most difficult moments of my baseball career,” Lorenzen recalled.

Davis didn’t believe it was conceivable at the highest level, but he encouraged Lorenzen not to let his pessimism get in the way of his dreams.

Lorenzen was able to keep the concept alive as a result of this.

He pushed for the opportunity to bat and play defense at every step, and he finally began to earn some of it last season as a result of his efforts.

He would dash into the dugout, take a few swings off the tee, then dash toward the on-deck circle to get ready for the game.

Lorenzen would be taking swings in the batting cage when he would be called upon to pitch, giving him little time to even get to the bullpen before the game started.

Lorenzen feels that pitching has aided him in becoming a better batter.

To him, free swinging is synonymous with attacking himself in the following ways: breaking balls away, bringing in hard stuff late, expanding late.

“All year last year, I was going up there with that knowledge in mind, playing out what I believed was going to happen, and it helped a ton,” he said.

As a right-handed reliever who pitches in middle to high-leverage situations, he already has a job; but, if he continues to produce consistently at the plate, that role will grow dramatically.

He acknowledges that he is under “a tremendous amount of strain.” “However, I really enjoy it,” he remarked.

It’s something you have to accept.” The Angels claimed Cowart off waivers in October after he threw a bullpen session for them.

It was the first day of November when Cowart began throwing again, marking the first time he had ever begun his offseason program so early.

He began training at EVO UltraFit in Phoenix, where he sought assistance from renowned major league pitchers such asRyan Madson andZack Godley, among others.

Lorenzen has pushed this principle to its logical conclusion.

Lorenzen personally flew Portal to Southern California last year to teach him, and he didn’t skimp on the expenses.

He came in Rangers camp without ever having thrown off a mound, but he had already done it four times by March 12 – one of which was an entertaining live batting practice session against Hunter Pence – before the team’s first game against the Los Angeles Angels.

The fact that he can pitch distinguishes him from the other position players who have been more relied upon to do so in recent years.

“This is a lot,” Woodward said, “but having him on your roster would be really beneficial, knowing that if games go out of hand, you can trust him to come in and throw strikes, saving some of the rest of our bullpen.” Woodward added that having him on the team would be beneficial.

Triple-A pitching coach Pat Rice agreed.

“Didn’t you take the time to read the sheet?” A few minutes later, Cowart approached the daily schedule, which was posted on a wall between the clubhouse and the showers, and peered at it with a puzzled expression for a few moments.

It takes me three or four times to make sure I’m in the appropriate place, Cowart said.

“I believe there are simply so many different ways it may play out that I’m not really sure which one I want to go with now,” he remarked.

It’s possible that it’s just too much.

I really don’t know.

He couldn’t have gotten away that easily.

The fact that there is no true precedent for a position like this is a testament to Lorenzen’s ability to thrive in an uncertain environment.

“Superstition is fear displayed in a new manner,” he says in one of his favorite quotations.

Such an approach, in his opinion, is a crutch.

‘There isn’t a blueprint, and I don’t require one for it,’ says the author.

Cowart, on the other hand, feels they will gain from the addition of a 26th roster space, which is scheduled to be implemented in 2020.

However, they will be able to label someone a two-way player if he has pitched at least 20 innings and started at least 20 games at a position, including designated hitter, in either the current season or the season before, whichever comes first.

Woodward was one of those who had reservations about Ohtani at the outset.

In 512 3 innings on the mound, he posted a 3.31 earned run average and 63 strikeouts.

It was just a few years ago that the walls began to come down, with the concept that clubs might reduce a pitcher’s workload by sending a position player on the mound when games got out of hand.

According to research from ESPN StatsInformation, 48 position players combined to make 65 appearances last season, the most since the expansion era began in 1961 and the most since the expansion era began in 1961.

The experimentation should continue to grow, but it’s impossible to predict whether or not others will follow in Ohtani’s footsteps.

However, McKay and English are still a long way away from making it to the major leagues as starting pitchers who can also bat for power.

This is the essential question.

“It all depends on their tools, their athleticism, and their commitment as to whether or not they will have that level of impact.

Simply put, Shohei is an exceptionally gifted athlete, and I have a feeling that he has the potential to be successful in several other sports as well as in basketball and baseball. Making such a reality is going to necessitate the creation of a very unique package.”

No New Ohtanis, but Another Wave of Two-Way Players Is Coming

In order for Shohei Ohtani to recuperate from Tommy John surgery, and 2017 first-round picks to compete, he will not throw this season. However, while two-way players like Hunter Greene and Brendan McKay are still a long way away from reaching the majors, numerous clubs are experimenting with the prospect of using them in several positions. It’s worth taking a closer look. It is undoubtedly appropriate to speculate about lefty knuckleball pitchers who have been woodshedding in South Korea throughout the spring season.

  • Please understand that we are not referring about a new generation of Ohtani clones.
  • As a two-time winner of theDick HowserTrophy in college for his double-duty work at the University of Texas, and then as the Cubs’ 10th overall pick in the 1993 draft, Kieschnick mostly failed to impress in 113 games for Chicago, Cincinnati, and Colorado from 1996 to 2001.
  • After a brief stint on the mound with the White Sox’s Triple-A Charlotte affiliate in 2002, he signed with the Brewers in 2003 and 2004.
  • In his dual role, he was more successful in the first year than he was in the second, accruing a total of 0.8 WAR in the former year.
  • Even if the results do not produce a star on the order of Shohei Ohtani, this is a really fascinating concept in an era where pitching staffs are becoming longer and benches are getting shorter.
  • It is expected that he will return to the Angels in May, but he will not pitch in 2019, which does not rule out the chance that the team could have a two-way player on the roster at some time during the 2019 campaign.
  • While splitting his season virtually equally between the Halos’ Hi-A, Double-A, and Triple-A organizations, Walsh, who bats and throws left-handed, hit a combined.277/.359/.536 with 29 home runs and a.277 batting average.

He also made eight relief appearances (at least two at each stop) over the course of the season, pitching 5.2 innings, striking out seven and walking two while allowing six hits and walking two.

Minor league reliever won-loss records aren’t particularly important, but he also went 1-1 in two outings with the team’s A-level Burlington club in 2016.

Last week, after receiving a crash lesson in pitching mechanics and arm care, he joined the rest of the pitchers in camp and began throwing bullpens.

He is now focusing on improving his breaking ball’s slurvy action.

As a result, that gambit may be kept for interleague games in National League venues.

“It’s thrilling, but I’m trying to make things as easy as possible,” Walsh explained.

Being on the pitchers’ arm care program means that I will be doing that every day, but I will also be talking to the hitting coaches about hitting and all of that other nonsense.

As well as Way, a 2014 seventh-round pick who plays center field, the team sent him to the instructional league, despite the fact that he did not receive an NRI to the major league camp this spring.

He made six appearances on the mound, striking out five in 6.1 innings while allowing six hits, two walks, and two earned runs; he pitched in the same game as Walsh on two separate occasions.

It was also anticipated that the Angels would allow former first-round choice and Baseball America Top 100 prospectKaleb Cowarttry pitching, because, let’s face it, the hitting wasn’t working (.177/.241/.293 in 380 career PA, with even worse stats last season).

According to The Baseball America Prospect Handbook 2011, he was considered a first-round pitching prospect coming out of Cook High School in Adel, Georgia, where his fastball “sat in the low 90s with sink” and his changeup “was in the low 90s with sink.” The Salt Lake City native has experience in every infield position as well as left field in the majors, and he has just added right field to his list of accomplishments.

  • Even though he hasn’t pitched in a professional game yet, according to Tigers manager Ron Gardenhire earlier this week, “Right now, we want him to become more involved in the pitching portion of the game.” We are aware of what he is capable of defending.
  • That’s one of the primary reasons we got him on board.” Cowart has set up bullpens throughout camp, but his command of the situation has been shaky thus far.
  • However, it was directly in front of my lips.
  • “The ball, on the other hand, came out of his hand pretty well.
  • However, it will be a long and drawn-out procedure.
  • He did make significant strides forward last season, hitting.228/.319/.419 with 20 home runs, a 104 wRC+, and 0.8 WAR in 434 PA – still not spectacular, but a significant improvement from his 84 wRC+ and -0.9 WAR in 2017.
  • Last season, Davidson proved to be the most productive and logical choice among position players when it came to taking on more frequent pitching responsibilities.

He allowed just one hit and one walk while striking out two (Rougned OdorandGiancarlo Stanton).

It’s appropriate, since he was selected by Arizona as a supplementary first-round pick in 2009.

A curveball and a changeup were also reported by Pitch Info, however Statcast labeled some of those changeups as sliders and others as split-fingered fastballs, and numerous sources corroborate that he does have a splitter in his arsenal of pitches.

He ultimately inked a minor league deal with the Rangers earlier this month and will get the opportunity to rip Odor, who he struck out with a slider on June 29.

Instead, he intends to return to mop-and-bucket duty, which he performed last year, and to progress to bullpen sessions as time permits.

Sullivan of MLB.com: “I don’t want to give the impression that I’m going to the major leagues and being a terrific pitcher,” Davidson said.

I aspire to be the best buddy of the pitchers.

“I want to be the one who comes to their rescue.” Michael Lorenzen (Reds) is a right-handed pitcher who formerly played center field and closer for Cal State Fullerton as a student there.

Lorenzen has made only three starts in his 150 appearances over the previous three seasons, all of which came last season, after starting 21 games in his rookie season.

While he can reach high-90s with his fastball, he’s more likely to throw a sinker (40.8 percent of all pitches last year, according to Pitch Info) than a four-seamer (10.7 percent); his extensive repertoire also includes a cutter, changeup, curveball, and slider — more than enough pitches to get a game going.

In 34 PA, he hit.290/.333/.710.

In 92 PA, he has hit.250/.276/.500 for a wRC+ of 101 and a wRC+ of 102.

Now they’re looking to capitalize on that to a greater extent, and with the support of new manager David Bell, they’ve allowed Lorenzen to assist in the development of a plan, which will require a great deal of coordination among the coaching and training staff to prevent him from overexerting himself during the process.

In terms of position playing, Lorenzen will be available as a center fielder, though he is not competing for the starting job, which is being held by top prospect Nick Senzel, who is blocked at both second base and third base.

“A lot of the justifications were along the lines of ‘You know, we don’t want to overwork him.'” Let’s just sit down and speak about it from here on out, shall we?

They are willing to work with others to find solutions to problems.” … “We’ve laid out a strategy for success.

Instead of going out and getting extra work in all the time, which would be exhausting on my body, I will take my rest when I need it because I’m getting the work I need to get done.” Bell expressed himself as follows: “I have to take it gradually because I think it’s very amazing that he’s preparing himself in this manner.

I really like how he approached it.

“It’s quite nice.” Rest certain that we’ll be tracking the success of all of these players’ attempts to pull double duty, perhaps with some up-to-date scouting information, since novelty — pitchers hitting home runs, position players manning the mound — helps to keep the grind of the long season interesting.

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