Desmond Jennings is Good at Baseball

Last night for Triple-A Durham, Desmond Jennings tied an International League record by going 7-for-7 in a single game. That’s pretty good. Desmond Jennings is pretty good.

This season Jennings has already put the Southern League MVP under his belt. There, in Double-A, he posted a .316/.395/.486 line with 37 bases in 42 tries. As some extra icing on the cake, coaches and managers rated him the best defensive outfielder in the league. He also displayed tremendous plate discipline, drawing 48 walks against 52 strikeouts in 440 plate appearances. Jennings was doing a little bit of everything. He has not slowed down a bit since being called up to Triple-A.

For Durham Jennings has a downright tasty .420 wOBA over 116 plate appearances, including 14 more steals in 16 tries. He’s also walking more (18 BB) than he’s striking out (14 K).

Because of his tools, performance and football background, Jennings has been drawn a few comparisons to his future teammate, Carl Crawford. While Crawford was up in the majors by the time he was 20, Jennings, 22, has shown more patience and extra base pop throughout his minor league career. The only major question mark is his durability.

With B.J. Upton, Crawford and Jennings in the outfield in 2010, the Rays will boast just a freakishly athletic and rangy outfield.




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Erik Manning is the founder of Future Redbirds and covers the Cardinals for Heater Magazine. You can get more of his analysis and rantings in bite-sized bits by following him on twitter.


18 Responses to “Desmond Jennings is Good at Baseball”

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  1. Joe R says:

    Are the Rays looking to get Jennings playing time in 2009, or are they keeping him away from the majors rather than start the arb clock?

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  2. Steve C says:

    I kind of think the Rays may be better off with an outfield of Crawford, Zobrist, and Jennings.

    Upton had two very good seasons built upon BABIPs of 399 (474AB) and 351 (531 AB). Some players due tend to have a high BABIP throughout their careers, but it is something to be skeptical of.

    In a little homework for this comment I came across a fun little trivia question.

    Who has a career BABIP, Jeter or Ichiro?

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  3. Justin says:

    More like saving rookie of the year awards! In seriousness, they don’t have the room, Zobrist/ Grapler platoon and now perez is back. I think they will just wait him out one more year.

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    • Joe R says:

      Did you just pitch the idea of making Zobrist a platoon player?

      Really?

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    • rizzo says:

      Or make room for him because they ‘can’t afford’ Crawford’s option year since they draw like 842 people a game

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      • staplemaniac says:

        I see no way in hell that the front office doesn’t pick up Crawford’s option.

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      • joser says:

        Attendance is down more than 5% in Tampa, despite the WS run last year (which is still better than baseball as a whole, which is suffering from the economic crisis though not as badly as many feared). And there will be no post-season money coming in this year, despite expectations. Meanwhile Crawford is going to cost them $10M, which will be about 15% of their payroll assuming they don’t take on any new obligations. With kids in AAA knocking on the door, I think the FO has to look long and hard at the $1.25M buyout instead (or, if they’re feeling [f]risky, picking up the option and then shopping him to other teams). Sure, Crawford is the face of the franchise, for whatever that’s worth, but they’ve got a lot of stars now (notably Longoria, who’s going to be the face of the franchise in 2011 when Crawford is definitely gone regardless). Meanwhile, business is business and dollars are dollars. And Crawford is going to be getting a lot of them, which might be better spent elsewhere.

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      • Joe R says:

        I can see a lot of teams wanting Crawford, too. Mets, Cardinals, Dodgers if they don’t resign Ramirez, Tigers, Twins, Giants, and Braves all come to mind as 2010 contenders who could use a Carl Crawford.

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  4. Eric says:

    what kind of fantasy option might Jennings be in the upcoming future (2010,2011)

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  5. mario says:

    desmond wont start the year in st pete next year, but he will be up shortly thereafter.

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  6. cj says:

    They will definitley pick up Crawfords option, even if only to trade him.

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  7. Justin R. says:

    Since there was another Justin that posted on this topic, I’ll post with a last initial.

    I loved Jennings back in 2007. I love him still. An outfield of Crawford-Upton-Jennings is nasty. Zobrist will be the everyday 2B for them. Iwamura has a 2010 club option and it is unlikely that he returns due to the great play of Zobrist. It leaves Iwamura as the odd man out. Pena-Zobrist-Bartlett-Longoria would be their defense in the infield. Burrell will likely be the DH.

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  8. nick says:

    Sean Rodriguez will be at second base for them. They’d be smart to see what the market is for both Crawford and Zorilla (capitalize on his great season possibly). Pena at 1B, SRod at 2B, Longoria at 3B, Bartlett at SS, and some combination of Jennings, Crawford, Zobrist, Upton, and Burrell at OF/DH. Best option would be trading Burrell but I can’t imagine there’d be much of a market for him unless they include some money

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  9. UConnBasketball says:

    What are the chances desmond is playing Left field for the Rays in 2011?

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