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Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Gleeman: Micah Owings switches from pitcher to first baseman, signs with Nationals

And what better day for it than the Babe’s birthday…

Micah Owings is no longer the best-hitting pitcher in baseball. Now he’s just another minor league first baseman trying to make it to the majors, as the 30-year-old has officially switched from pitching to hitting and signed with the Nationals...

he’s far from guaranteed to be a productive everyday hitter, particularly at an offense-driven position like first base.

As a first baseman/pitcher, however, Owings could be awfully interesting even if he were just mediocre at both roles and for a minor-league deal the price is certainly right for the Nationals.

The District Attorney Posted: February 06, 2013 at 12:12 PM | 26 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: micah owings, nationals, transactions

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. phredbird Posted: February 06, 2013 at 01:09 PM (#4363978)
huh, is ankiel still with washington or did he get released?
   2. Ivan Grushenko of Hong Kong Posted: February 06, 2013 at 01:18 PM (#4363993)
You want to platoon them?
   3. Rickey! Filipino Diving Team Posted: February 06, 2013 at 01:20 PM (#4363996)
Ankiel switched back to pitching.
   4. Chris Needham Posted: February 06, 2013 at 01:27 PM (#4364012)
The Nats dumped Ankiel mid-season last year.
   5. Gch exhales the vast drunken folly of Epicurus Posted: February 06, 2013 at 01:29 PM (#4364015)
huh, is ankiel still with washington or did he get released?


He got a spring training invite from the Astros, he'll compete for a backup outfielder spot.
   6. Fernigal McGunnigle Posted: February 06, 2013 at 01:46 PM (#4364047)
This goes in the Jed Lowrie thread, but Ankiel's 694 OPS last year would've been second among Houston outfielders with 150+ PAs, and third among everyone BBRef lists as an OF.
   7. Davo's Favorite Tacos Are Moose Tacos Posted: February 06, 2013 at 02:46 PM (#4364175)
BBTF-approved signing.
   8. Shock Posted: February 06, 2013 at 03:43 PM (#4364273)
I thought he already did this.
   9. esseff Posted: February 06, 2013 at 03:51 PM (#4364288)
As a first baseman/pitcher, however, Owings could be awfully interesting even if he were just mediocre at both roles and for a minor-league deal the price is certainly right for the Nationals.


Willie Smith in 1964: 118 ERA+ in 15 pitching appearances, 125 OPS+ in 373 plate appearances.

EDIT: Should add that, adding to his value, Smith's non-pitching appearances included a couple of starts in CF.
   10. Ron J2 Posted: February 06, 2013 at 04:18 PM (#4364343)
#9 I knew Smith had pitched. Checked out his minor league record and ... well I guess it's not surprising that he did OK for the Dodgers. He was 14-2 with a (league best for 100+ IP) 2.11 era at AAA in 1963. Looks a little bit fluky. His K rate is nothing special and his walk rate is a little high. Still, not a bad record.

   11. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: February 06, 2013 at 04:25 PM (#4364371)
Similarly, Owings is 21-4 as a minor league pitcher. (3.27 ERA, okay peripherals) And .337/.362/.483 at the plate, mostly in AAA.
   12. esseff Posted: February 06, 2013 at 05:11 PM (#4364465)
Ron J2,

Actually, Angels not Dodgers, though same pitcher-friendly ballpark at the time.
   13. shoewizard Posted: February 06, 2013 at 05:40 PM (#4364496)
About 4 years too late
   14. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: February 06, 2013 at 05:53 PM (#4364502)
Owings is too impatient to be a productive first baseman, I bet. Two-way is the way to go, if his body would permit it. I'd love to see a platoon between he and Ankiel.
   15. philphan Posted: February 06, 2013 at 06:14 PM (#4364520)
Ken Brett. I loved Ken Brett. OPS+ of 95, .406 career slugging, 4.1 WAR. Four homers and 16 RBIs for the Phillies in 1973.
   16. Ray (RDP) Posted: February 06, 2013 at 06:42 PM (#4364538)
I always hoped Brooks Kieshnick would be used more as a two-way player.

I think the Red Sox had a crappy 1B about 10 years ago who wanted to try this. David someone, RHB... basically a 'can't miss' prospect who did.
   17. vortex of dissipation Posted: February 06, 2013 at 06:50 PM (#4364545)
I think the Red Sox had a crappy 1B about 10 years ago who wanted to try this. David someone, RHB... basically a 'can't miss' prospect who did.


David McCarty.
   18. Ray (RDP) Posted: February 06, 2013 at 08:07 PM (#4364578)
Yes, McCarty, yes.
   19. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: February 06, 2013 at 08:15 PM (#4364582)
I was also rooting for Brooks Kieshnick and David McCarty. I still hold out hope Dontrelle could also be a two-way player.
   20. asinwreck Posted: February 06, 2013 at 08:24 PM (#4364586)
Wonder why he's not giving OF a try.
   21. Der-K: downgraded to lurker Posted: February 06, 2013 at 09:57 PM (#4364653)
In college he was a DH/1b/3b type (who dabbled in the outfield). BA suggested that he play third, if he didn't pitch. Dude is big, by the way, 6-5.

This probably impresses few, but the Tulane squad he was on after he transferred from GT (where he was an All American - weird for an A-A to switch schools) could play an infield comprised solely of future big leaguers, though marginal ones: mark Hamilton, brad emaus, tommy manzella, and owings.
   22. Barnaby Jones Posted: February 06, 2013 at 10:09 PM (#4364659)
I thought he already did this.


Ditto.
   23. McCoy Posted: February 06, 2013 at 10:34 PM (#4364671)
You're probably thinking of Brooks Kieshnick.
   24. flournoy Posted: February 07, 2013 at 12:17 AM (#4364719)
GT had a lot of marginal future big leaguers on Owings' teams, too. Eric Patterson, Brandon Boggs, Matt Murton, Tyler Greene, Mike Nickeas... maybe a couple more. I think Matt Wieters came in just after Owings left.
   25. RMc's Got a Lot of Trouble at Stake Posted: February 07, 2013 at 07:55 AM (#4364759)
Cut rosters to 15, so position players have to pitch occasionally.
   26. Bourbon Samurai is disturbed by bagel developments Posted: February 10, 2013 at 07:37 PM (#4366770)
huh, is ankiel still with washington or did he get released?


He got a spring training invite from the Astros, he'll compete for a backup outfielder spot.


I actually was quite surprised he didn't get a mid season pick up somewhere, he was pretty well hailed as a positive clubhouse presence and still was a solid defender (the few times the Nats ran out Ankiel, Werth, and Harper all together were some of the best defensive outfields I've ever seen. Particularly you would never, ever take an extra base on them.)

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