Jantzen Witte Seperating Himself From the Rest

Jantzen Witte

Through his first eight games, Portland Sea Dogs first baseman Jantzen Witte has separated himself from the rest.

At 6-foot-2 195 pounds, he has the frame of a power hitter and it showed a little bit last year when he popped 12 homers in 130 games. His .312 batting average and .379 on-Jantzen Wittebase percentage were not enough to put him on the map among top prospects last year, but if he keeps it up then people will have to start taking notice.
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When the Red Sox drafted him in the 24th round of the 2013 MLB draft, they likely did not know what they were getting, but now they must be pleasantly surprised. To date this year, Witte is ten-for-28 at the plate (.357 average) in eight games for the Portland Sea Dogs. It is a small sample size, but a step in the right direction for the 25-year-old in one of the top farm systems in the game.

Interestingly enough, Witte clobbered left-handed pitching last year which could be his calling that separates him from the pack. In 129 at-bats last year against lefties, he hit .365 The Red Sox have plenty of bats hitting well in the Minors, but finding someone who mashes lefties is hard to come by. More often than not, the guys who hit righties moderately well fall off a cliff against southpaws.
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As a right-handed bat, Witte has the opportunity to go out there this year and prove his success was no fluke. He should have no problem getting enough reps as the Sea Dogs everyday first baseman. Not to mention he played a handful of games at third base last year.

On the other hand, PawSox first baseman Travis Shaw cannot hit lefties for his life being one himself.
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It may be a reach, but perhaps those two are a viable platoon option at some point down the road. Just thinking out loud here…

Portland Sea Dogs Win Home Opener Over Fightin Phils 4-2

Portland Sea Dogs

Jonathan Aro pitched three shutout innings in relief of Luis Diaz to earn the win and Keury De La Cruz got the scoring started with a 3-run home run in the bottom of the first inning, propelling the Portland Sea Dogs to a 4-2 Opening Day victory on Saturday against the Reading Fightin Phils.

After guaranteeing baseball would be played at Hadlock Field for Opening Day Portland Sea Dogson Thursday, April 9, the Portland Sea Dogs were forced to push back their home opener two days because of inclement weather. Fans who had tickets for the April 9 contest will receive two tickets for future games.

Sea Dogs’ third baseman, Mike Miller, led off the bottom of the first with a single to center field, and second baseman, Carlos Asuaje, followed with a nine pitch walk. After Henry Ramos popped out to Phil’s third baseman, Gustavo Pierre, Keury De La Cruz drilled a hanging breaking ball to right field for a three-run home run off Reading’s starter and MLB.com’s 38th ranked prospect, Aaron Nola.

Portland would add their fourth and final run of the contest in the bottom of the second inning. After first baseman, Jantzen Witte, drilled a two-out double to left field, Mike Miller hit a line drive single to left field to drive him in.

Boston’s 28th top prospect, according to SoxProspects.com, Luis Diaz, who turned 23 years old on April 9, got the start for Portland and performed well pitching four innings while allowing two runs on five hits and a walk. Jonathan Aro came out of the bullpen in relief and pitched three shutout innings, allowing a hit and a walk, while striking out one, en route to his first win of the season.

Due to the inclement weather postponing Thursday and Friday’s attempts to open the season, this game was played as part of a single admission double-header on Saturday, with both contests scheduled for seven innings. The Sea Dogs dropped the second game to Reading by a score of 9-0 to split the twinbill.