BRIAN JEROLOMAN
CATCHER
Born: May 10, 1985
Height: 6’0″
Weight: 200
Bats: Left
Throws: Right
Drafted: 6th Round, 2006 Draft, 180th Overall (Blue Jays)
How Acquired: Cash transaction (from Cleveland)
College: University of Florida
Agent: N/A

WTM’S PIRATE PLAYER PROFILES

The Pirates have now acquired Jeroloman twice.  They first claimed him off waivers from Toronto in November 2011, then soon after that lost him back to the Jays on a waiver claim.  At the end of spring training in 2013, they acquired him from the Indians for cash.

After his sophomore year in college, Jeroloman was considered a top catching prospect, but he hit only .242 as a junior.  Baseball America’s report on him at the time of the draft was unusually negative about his hitting, but his defensive ability was highly regarded, especially his ability to receive and to handle pitchers.  He also had a good arm and very good pop times.  As a pro, he’s had trouble throwing out base stealers in the last couple seasons, but he’s still well regarded defensively, enough so that he ranked as high as 12th on BA’s list of Toronto’s top 30 prospects.  His primary contribution on offense has been to draw walks.  He has little power and no speed.

2006
A-:  241/363/326, 141 AB, 10 2B, 1 HR, 26 BB, 38 K

Debuted in the NYPL and did little with the bat other than draw a lot of walks.  He threw out 42% of base stealers.

2007
A+:  259/421/338, 290 AB, 14 2B, 3 HR, 85 BB, 57 K

Moved up to high A and led the league in walks, but again didn’t do much else at bat.

2008
AA:  270/396/416, 226 AB, 15 2B, 6 HR, 47 BB, 47 K
AAA:  200/302/227, 75 AB, 2 2B, 11 BB, 17 K 

Jeroloman started hitting the ball harder in AA, even showing a little power and earning a promotion.  On the season his CS% was 37%.

2009
AA:  217/330/316, 364 AB, 16 2B, 1 3B, 6 HR, 62 BB, 120 K, 1-1 SB

The Jays sent Jeroloman back to AA for and he stopped hitting.  In fact, he started striking out a lot for the first time, fanning in a third of his at-bats.  He did throw out 43% of base stealers and he stole his first career base.  The Jays left him exposed to the Rule 5 draft after the season and he was not selected.

2010
AA:  261/429/412, 245 AB, 16 2B, 7 HR, 69 BB, 91 K, 0-1 SB
AAA:  316/519/789, 19 AB, 3 2B, 2 HR, 8 BB, 10 K 

Jeroloman went back to AA for a third year and hit about like he had in 2008, although his K rate went even higher than 2009.  His CS% dropped to 27% on the year.

2011
AAA:  240/335/295, 271 AB, 9 2B, 2 HR, 38 BB, 72 K, 3-6 SB

Finally in AAA, Jeroloman struggled at the plate, showing almost no power and still fanning in over a quarter of his at-bats.  Opponents ran on him much more often than in the past and he threw out only 15% of base stealers.  The Jays called him up in late August and he spent 37 days, the rest of the season, in the majors without ever getting into a game.  It was revealed only after the season that he’d been suffering from a wrist injury, but the Jays never put him on the disabled list.  After the season, Toronto removed him from the 40-man roster and the Pirates claimed him, only to designate him for assignment three days later and have him re-claimed by the Jays.

2012
R:  286/286/286, 7 AB
A+:  000/000/000, 11 AB, 6 K
AA:  195/308/195, 113 AB, 15 BB, 25 K, 2-4 SB

The Jays sent Jeroloman back to AA, but he ended up missing much of the season with a knee injury.  After the season he became a free agent and signed with Cleveland.

Jeroloman had trouble getting to AAA and struggled once he got there.  Hitters whose primary ability is drawing walks don’t tend to do well at higher levels, because the pitchers aren’t afraid to throw strikes.  At this point, he appears to be strictly an organizational catcher.  The Pirates assigned him initially to Indianapolis, where they already had Tony Sanchez, Ali Solis and Lucas May, although Sanchez and Solis were coming off minor injuries at the start of the season.  Jeroloman’s playing time in 2013 will probably depend mainly on injuries, promotions and the like.

STATS
Baseball Reference–Minors
Fangraphs
MiLB.com
CONTRACT INFORMATION
2012: Minor league contract
PLAYER INFORMATION
Signing Bonus: $165,000
MiLB Debut: 2006
MLB Debut: N/A
MiLB FA Eligible: 2013
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: 11/19/2010
Options Remaining: 2 (USED: 2011)
MLB Service Time: 0.000
TRANSACTIONS
June 7, 2006: Drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 6th round, 180th overall pick; signed on June 29.
November 19, 2010: Contract purchased by the Toronto Blue Jays.
November 18, 2011: Claimed off waivers by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
November 21, 2011: Designated for assignment by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
November 23, 2011: Claimed off waivers by the Toronto Blue Jays.
November 3, 2012: Became a free agent.
December 19, 2012: Signed with the Cleveland Indians as a minor league free agent.
March 29, 2012: Traded by the Cleveland Indians to the Pittsburgh Pirates for cash.