Bradenton Marauders: Jared Jones Bounces Back From Rough July with Career Best Outing

Photo Credit: Luis Sinco and the Los Angeles Times

Baseball is all about making adjustments. It's a long season and it's impossible to get through an entire one without enduring some sort of slump. How players react to them and makes said adjustments determines for how long they may slump.

For minor league players, how they overcome adversity and adjust to the opposition pushing back can determine just how long of a career they can carve out.

The month of July it certainly seemed like it pushed at Bradenton Marauders righty, and former Pittsburgh Pirates' second round pick Jared Jones. In four appearances (three starts), the product of La Miranda HS has allowed 19 hits and 11 earned runs in 16 1/3 innings pitched (6.06 ERA). 

His only non start of the month was a piggy back effort behind Steven Brault, who was making a rehab start in Bradenton.

That game he allowed three runs on five hits across 3 1/3 innings pitched. 

Now that the month has turned over to August, Jones quickly put the month of July behind him. Not only did he start to look like he was returning to his form from the beginning of the season, he also set new career highs in innings pitched (6) and strike outs (8).

After a rough first inning that saw him end up with runners on first and third with just one out, Jones dug deep and was able to get the next two batters to go down on strikes.

A PK Morris solo home run was his only blemish on the night. With just 65 pitches through five innings, Jones got a chance to pitch into the sixth inning for the first time in his career, and was maybe at his absolute best in that final frame - as the 19-year old righty struck out the side, all of which were swinging strikes.

On the day 17 of his 55 strikes thrown were for swings and misses, with his slider able to get quite a few ugly looking attempts by the opposition.

He also showed great defensive awareness in going to cover second base on a bloop shot, able to tag the runner to get the out.

There is no way that you can't be excited about his upside at this point, with Jones being nearly three years younger than other players at his position in the Low-A Southeast. He's thrown 63% of his pitches for strikes on the season, and is striking out 13.69 batters per nine innings pitched. 

You could even say there is some room in improvement based on his BABIP (batting average of balls in play) being a high .411.

July was a rough month, but like any good ballplayer, Jones was able to put it behind him and get off to a strong start in August. It will be interesting to see how he can continue to build on from this outing, firmly in place as the team's Sunday starter.

Other notes from the game

>>It shouldn't be hard to tell how high the Pirates' front office is on Abrahan Gutierrez. He was originally part of the trade that was going to send Tyler Anderson to the Philadelphia Phillies. When that trade fell through and Anderson ended up going to Seattle, Pittsburgh didn't give up. They circled back and made a separate trade just to get Gutierrez, sending lefty Braeden Ogle the other way instead.

He paid immediate dividents to that trade, getting hits in his first two at bats - including a double - hitting as the DH on Sunday.

>>Hudson Head hit his 11th home run of the season, a solo shot which also was his 35th RBI of the year. 

>>The Marauders turned three double plays on the game with Jase Bowen, playing second base today, in the middle of each of them.

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