The Power Rankings Season Wrap Up

Jackson finishes at #1

Around the FutureBacks offices the only math we're willing to do involves batting averages and ERAs. If one of us is feeling really frisky, we'll figure out a strikeout to walk ratio, but as those of you who read the Power Rankings on a regular basis know, Managing Editor James Renwick is a lot more likely to give you the 'full stat line.' Still, every now and again Mr. Renwick breaks out the old calculator, and the result is the first annual FutureBacks Power Awards.

The Blockbuster Video 'Late Charge' Award

Goes to South Bend closer Matt Elliott, who didn't even debut on the PR until week six, and yet finished at #2.  How does that happen?  A May record of 0-3 with a 5.40 ERA didn't help matters, but it didn't take long for him, or the PR, to straighten things out.  Starting July 4th Elliott ran off a series of 24 straight appearances without allowing an earned run.  That got him noticed, and performing at his best during a playoff run in September rocketed him toward the top.

The Nowhere To Go But Down Award

Tennessee pitcher Adam Bass was our #1 in the very first Power Rankings of the year, but four straight losses in the next two and a half weeks dropped Bass to fourth, and then eighth, and then completely off the list.  He would resurface 'On the Cusp' in week seven, but not be heard from again.  More next season on whether the #1 in Week One is a curse.

And Our Pick For Next Year

We start from scratch, our first PR of the 2006 season will be roughly two weeks into the season, but we've already got a pick in mind.  While Stephen Drew and Carlos Quentin might be the top prospects, that also means they are the most likely to get the call to the big show, very possibly right from the start.  No, the FutureBacks pick for the #1 Overall Power Player in the Diamondbacks system next year is Chris Carter.  After a fantastic 2005, during which he was arguably better after the promotion than before, he'll start '06 in Double-A again, with a year more of experience, and plenty of time to hone his skills.

That's because he likely won't be going anywhere.  The Diamondbacks will look to continue the conversion of Carter from first baseman to outfielder, and with his arm the only outfield spot available to him will be left.  That means he's blocked by Jackson at first and Gonzo in left, so there will be no rush, giving him a chance to rake on Southern League pitching all season.

The Top 10

We used the Modified Stableford System to calculate a Top 10 in the Power Rankings for the season.  Actually we added all the rankings up, if you were #1, you got one point, #15 was worth 15 points.  An 'On the Cusp' appearance got you 35 point, if you spent a week off the charts, 50 points were added to your score.  The only exceptions made were for players who dropped off the rankings due to promotions to the Major League level, which brings us right to #1.  There were 14 weeks of Power Rankings, thus the best possible score would be 14.

1 Conor Jackson Total Score 18 Weeks On Chart:  9 Weeks at #1:  2 Top 10 Weeks:   9

Technically Jackson should have had another 250 points added to his score, but at the beginning of the season we set the parameters; getting promoted to the Majors could not result in a penalty, and as long as you spent more than half the season on the Power Rankings, you were eligible, that meant a minimum of seven weeks, and Jackson stayed on for nine weeks.

2 Chris Carter Total Score  70 Weeks On Chart:  14 Weeks at #1:  1 Top 10 Weeks:  14

Of those who stayed on the PR for the full 14 weeks, clearly Carter was at the top.  No wonder, after hitting .296 with 21 homers and 85 RBI in 400+ at bats in Lancaster he turned it on after the promotion to Tennessee, hitting .297 with 10 homers and 30 RBI in 128 at bats.

3 Carlos Gonzalez Total Score  79 Weeks On Chart:  14 Weeks at #1:  12 Top 10 Weeks:  12

Though Gonzales was only in the Top 10 for 12 of the 14 weeks, he never fell far out, dropping to a low of #14 and his two weeks at #1 propel him into the Top 3 in final wrap up, something he did only three times during the regular season.

4

A. J. Shappi

Total Score  119

Weeks On Chart:  14

Weeks at #1:  0

Top 10 Weeks:  9

Half way through the season Shappi might have challenged for a Top 3 spot, but once he was promoted to Double-A he struggled, dropping to a low of #16 in week nine.  Still impressive simply because he came back to reach #8 in week 12.

5

Enrique Gonzalez

Total Score  130

Weeks On Chart:  14

Weeks at #1:  0

Top 10 Weeks:  8

The Smokies pitcher started and finished strong, but his #19 week 11 coupled with back to back weeks at #17, and no weeks at #1, drop him into #5 for the season.

6

Andy Green

Total Score  136

Weeks On Chart: 14

Weeks at #1:  2

Top 10 Weeks:  8

At the beginning of the season, Andy Green was not expected to have the type of season that he had, a season which resulted in his winning the Pacific Coast League MVP award, and a September callup from the Diamondbacks.  His low spot on the PR was #21, but he spent five of the last six weeks in the Top 5, and lands at #6 overall.

7

Carlos Quentin

Total Score  151

Weeks On Chart:   14

Weeks at #1:  0

Top 10 Weeks:  9

It's amazing to think that Quentin never placed higher than #7 on the PR, but considering he spent nine weeks in the top ten, including the final six weeks of the season, his consistency keeps him right where he seemed to be all year, in the bottom half of the Top Ten.

8

Jeff Cook

Total Score  170

Weeks On Chart:  13

Weeks at #1:  2

Top 10 Weeks:  7

Cook wasn't even ranked in week one, and didn't crack the Top 20 until week four.  But once he did, it was all systems go, as he carried the JetHawks in the second half, the PR noticed, placing him #1 or #2 in four of the last five weeks of the season.

9

Dan Uggla

Total Score  172

Weeks On Chart:  14

Weeks at #1:  0

Top 10 Weeks:  6

Uggla started the season at #23 and finished at #25, but in 11 of the other 12 weeks he was in the Top 15, and he spent five straight in the Top 10.  Uggla has been quoted as saying he loves to play everyday, but judging by the way he fell off in the final month of the season, perhaps he should consider taking one off every now and again.

10

Miguel Montero

Total Score  181

Weeks On Chart:  12

Weeks at #1:  4

Top 10 Weeks:  9

Prior to his promotion, he was the only legitimate contender to Conor Jackson's crown, but Montero suffered perhaps more than any other promotee on the PR, but then again, he had farther to fall.  Montero spent four straight weeks at #1, and those were book ended by a pair of #2 finishes, so even after his fall, from #6 his first week in Tennessee to being completely off the list for the final two weeks, he still managed to keep the score low. 

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