View Full Version : Paul Ottavania

04-19-01, 12:50 PM
Although nobody ever talks about this guy, he is the Yankees best hitter in AAA. His is a lefty 1B/OF with an absolutely sweet stroke. Keep your eye out for him. He will likely beat out Nick Johnson as Tino's eventual replacement. If not, look for him to be our starting left or right fielder next season.

04-19-01, 12:52 PM
I need more info on this guy other than he has a sweet bat.

04-19-01, 12:55 PM
Paul Ottavinia is <i>not</i> the hitter Nick Johnson is. Not by a longshot. The Stick is off to a slow start in AAA, but he's an amazing hitter. .525 OBP in '99, for Pete's sake.

Still, I wonder why nobody mentions Ottavinia. Is he 35 years old or something? He had great stats in Norwich last year and he looks even better in Columbus so far. I assume he can't play center so nobody thinks of calling him up, but I've barely ever heard him mentioned as a prospect or even a possible replacement/backup.

04-19-01, 12:59 PM
I just found an article on him... (as well as johnson, lilly and some of our other clippers)


Ottavinia helps Clippers book victory over Durham
Thursday, April 19, 2001
Stephanie Storm
Dispatch Sports Reporter

Paul Ottavinia has this little book in which he keeps notes. It's just something he decided to do in his first triple-A season to help him hit well in an unfamiliar league full of veteran pitchers.

Initially, the Clippers utility man figured he might get some use out of keeping track of every pitch thrown to him, and by whom, while playing here and there as a fill-in.

But with Clippers starting center fielder and leadoff man Donzell McDonald called up to the New York Yankees before the start of yesterday afternoon's International League game against the Durham Bulls -- won by the Clippers 4-3 -- Ottavinia might have an opportunity to fill that book a lot more quickly.

While filling in for McDonald in center, Ottavinia was just one of five Clippers players to record hits in the come-from-behind win against the league's top pitching staff. Another was Nick Johnson, whose first home run of the season, a two-run shot to right field in the ninth inning, gave the Clippers the victory.

"The home run was big for Nick but even bigger for us,'' manager Trey Hillman said. "With five walk-off home runs in the first seven games, it was great to get that monkey -- or in our case, more like a gorilla -- off our backs with one of our own.''

Johnson's game-winner also allowed the Clippers (3- 10) to take a collective sigh of relief after splitting this homestand on the heels of a horrible 0-7 road swing.

Early on, it didn't appear as if the Clippers would need any late heroics as Durham starting pitcher Matt White struggled with his command from the beginning.

White, who battled control problems in spring training, walked three of the first five batters he faced. He allowed D'Angelo Jimenez to score the Clippers' first run on a wild pitch and committed an error when he threw wildly to first base while trying to keep base runner Robert Perez in check.

But a few words of wisdom from pitching coach Joe Coleman during a brief mound visit quickly turned things around for the shaky White. After escaping the first- inning nightmare, he went on to record a solid five-inning outing in which he allowed just the one run on one hit while retiring the last nine men he faced.

With White holding the Clippers at bay, the Bulls took advantage of an error on Clippers catcher Todd Greene during their three-run third. Left fielder Mike Frank's one-hop throw had Norm Hutchins easily nailed at the plate, but the ball popped out of Greene's mitt to allow Hutchins to score.

But once White gave way to Cedrick Bowers, Ottavinia gave himself something positive to jot down. His sixth-inning single broke the Clippers' five-inning hitting drought, giving them their second hit of the game with two men on and no outs.

Looking for an extra edge, Ottavinia uses the book to keep track of every pitch thrown to him, usually jotting down the information in between at-bats in the dugout or at his locker after the game.

"I saw a guy do it way back in my first year (1994) in Burlington (Iowa),'' said Ottavinia, who entered the game hitting a team-high .393 (third best in the league). "It's a way to keep track of what pitchers do against me. It helps me track their tendencies so that when I face a guy again, I can just flip open the book and look back and see a note like 'doesn't like to throw in,' or 'has a cutter as his out pitch.' ''

With the stingy Bulls pitching staff limiting the Clippers to just three hits entering the ninth, Greene redeemed himself by sparking the unlikely rally with a one- out single off closer Victor Zambrano, setting up Johnson's dramatic home run.

Just for the heck of it, Ottavinia ought to ask Johnson the specifics of his at-bat as added notebook fodder. You never know, it just might help when the teams meet again next week in Durham, N.C.

04-19-01, 01:01 PM
He is 26 or 27 years old I believe, and while he may not have the power of Nick Johnson, He looks to be a better hitter- much like Mark Grace.

His stats so far w/ Columbus:

------ --- - -- - - -- -- -- -- --- -- --
Ottavinia .387 10 31 5 12 17 3 1 0 2 4 0

Notice 0 strikeouts in 31AB- pretty impressive!

04-19-01, 01:11 PM
mhall, I don't know if you realize just how good of a hitter Nick Johnson is. :)

Even after missing an entire season in '00, Baseball Prospectus ranks him 13th on their prospects list. "Johnson should take over from Tino Martinez by 2002 at the very latest and quickly become one of the most devastating offensive forces in baseball. When he's in the lineup, that is." In '99, his .525 OBP was the equivalent of a major league OBP of .441. That's Jeter-good. Even his slugging percentage translated to a MLE of .438, better than Tino put up last year.

It's not a knock to Paul Ottavinia, but Nick Johnson (when healthy...) is a better hitter by quite a lot. And he's still five years from his prime.

04-19-01, 04:25 PM
How about this kid Robert Perez?
He's hitting .358, tied for 2nd in the league w/ 4 HR's, tied for 1st w/ 16 RBI, 2nd w/ a .755 Slugging PCT., 3rd in doubles w/ 5, 3rd in hits w/ 19, and he also has 3 SB's and 9 runs scored. He also has only 7 K's in 53 AB's while N. Johnson has 16 in 41 AB's .
WIth all that said, I'd bet he's not half the hitter Nick Johnson.

04-19-01, 04:31 PM
Nice stats on our kids - we do have to remember that AAA stats aren't always the same as MLB stats, look at the kid pitchers we've had up lately - but, it gives me a lot of hope for the future! :)

Jim F.
04-19-01, 07:49 PM
I'm surprised you would bring him up. He's a local kid from NJ. My boss has known Paul since he was a little boy, and we were just talking about him today. Paul said that Torre talked to him in Tampa, and gave him the choice to go to Columbus and play, or to stay w/ the big club and sit on the bench until needed. He chose to go to Columbus to play, as would have I.

From what I hear, this kid is a natural, and is indeed a very promising prospect for the Yankees.


04-19-01, 08:05 PM
Good Lets Keep him. :lol:

04-19-01, 08:49 PM
Originally posted by Jim F.
I'm surprised you would bring him up. He's a local kid from NJ. My boss has known Paul since he was a little boy, and we were just talking about him today. Paul said that Torre talked to him in Tampa, and gave him the choice to go to Columbus and play, or to stay w/ the big club and sit on the bench until needed. He chose to go to Columbus to play, as would have I.

From what I hear, this kid is a natural, and is indeed a very promising prospect for the Yankees.


Great story, Jim...I'm glad he chose to play and I'll keep my eye out for him!! I'll always give an extra hard clap for a kid from Jersey! :)

04-20-01, 02:06 PM
I hear that LHP David Martinez is now the gem on the farm for our boys.

04-20-01, 10:08 PM
thanks for the article. good read and info :)

04-20-01, 10:36 PM
Thanks for the Info.

07-08-01, 05:16 PM
Friday Jul 06, 2001
All it took to ruin Mike Paradis’ otherwise wonderful night was one bad pitch.

Paul Ottavinia slammed a two-out, three-run homer in the top of the fifth inning handing the Norwich Navigators a 3-2 win over the Bowie Baysox Friday evening at Prince George’s Stadium.

The win completed a three-game sweep for the visting Navigators.

Ottavinia took a 3-2 pitch from Mike Paradis (6-8) and drilled it over the fence down the right field line for his second home run since being sent down from AAA Columbus. The long ball brought home Teuris Olivares, who had reached on a bunt single and Victor Rodriguez, who had singled to left.

Outside of that fateful fifth, Paradis kept the slugging Navigators off balance, holding them to three singles and a walk during his other six innings. The right-hander walked one and struck out seven.

Bowie (36-47) grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third off Alex Graman (6-7). Tim Raines, Jr. doubled to left with one out, and, after Willie Harris lined to shortstop, scored on a ground single to right by Larry Bigbie, playing his first game since returning from the parent Orioles.

The Baysox climbed back to within a run in the sixth. Bigbie walked leading off the inning, and, after Steve Goodell was ejected for arguing a called third strike, stole second. Carlos Casimiro delivered the run with the third of his four singles in the ballgame, making it 3-2.

Norwich (46-38) went to left-hander Kevin Lovingier out of the bullpen. He held the Baysox hitless for the next 2 1/3 innings before Alex Pacheco shut the door for his 19th save.

Alan Mills pitched a scoreless eighth inning in what was expected to be his final rehabilitation appearance with the Baysox.



After reading the many posts here about how much fun it is to attend a minor league game I decided to take mrs. bxny and myself Friday night to see the Norwich Navigators at the Bowie Baysox (Orioles), we were not disappointed.

The Navigators have a player named Marcus Thames that looks promising. He had three homers and 8-rbi's in the first two games vs Bowie, he's hitting around .300 with 14 HR's and 48 rbi's. He was named to the AA All-Star team along with Alex Pacheco, the Norwich closer. Pacheco looked real good on Friday. He pitched 1 1/3 innings in relief for his AA league leading 19th save.

I was really impressed with the quality of play and how accessible the players were. A great atmosphere, especially for kids.

07-20-01, 01:45 PM
Ottavinia is currently at Norwich hitting 241 with 137 ab`s with 3 hr`s 17 rbi`s.I do not consider Paul a top prospect.

07-20-01, 03:18 PM
You don't consider Ottavania, or whatever his name is, a top prospect? But mhall guaranteed us that he would beat out Nick Johnson. mhall guaranteed us he would be on the big club next year playing LF or RF, if not 1b. He did so based on a few weeks of hitting in AAA. I guess baseball scouts must have more information than mhall.

Any more guarantees, mhall?