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2022 Diamondbacks Reviews, #5: Jake McCarthy

Snakepit 2022 Rookie of the Year


  • Rating: 7.93
  • 2022 stats: 354 PAs in 99 games. 8 hrs, 43 RBI and 23 steals (22 of which, after his mid July callup). .283/.342/.427 and OPS+ of 118.
  • Date of birth: July 30th, 1997. He will be 26 in 2023.

2022 salary: He is prearb and is listed at $702,400.

  • 2023 status: I think he will be the starting RF, most days.

The Pittsburgh Pirates originally drafted McCarthy in the 23rd round in 2015 out of high school, but he did not sign. The Dbacks drafted him in the 1st round in 2018 (#39) out of the University of Virginia.

He debuted on August 27th, 2021 drawing a walk and scoring a run in his first game. Two days later, he got his first base hit, a double (he also singled later). I was actually the guest recapper for that game, against Philadelphia..

Carson dumps one into center. Walker flies out to Harper. Young grounds one past Galvis, 2 on 1 out might have something going. Ellis flies out to McCutchen on a 2-1 pitch. Here is McCarthy, looking for his first MLB hit. Now would be a nice time. On a 2-2 pitch he gets jammed a bit, but it drops in between Realmuto and Harper! One run is in and the hit is scored a double for McCarthy’s first hit!

His first career hit, and also he threw out Bryce Harper at the plate (at :37)

McCarthy started 2022 with the team out of spring training. He made his season debut on opening day, he pinch ran for Pavin Smith and would score on Seth Beer’s walkoff 3 run home run. He struggled in the month of April, batting just .120 with 12 strikeouts in 28 PAs, before being sent to Reno. In 20 games he hit .400 with five homers and a 1.199 OPS and was called back up on May 20th.

From May 20th-June 14th, he hit .278, with 2 HRs and 8 RBI. During the same stretch, Pavin Smith batting just .152 and struck out 20 times. Yet, McCarthy was sent back to Reno. A very plausible scenario was made by Xerostomia in the comments of another article regarding a potential reason for McCarthy’s demotion vs Pavin’s (although that isnt what that thread was about).

He [McCarthy-Justin] has not reached 1 year service time (0.170) despite playing in 2021, and 2022. Thus he is under control for 6 more years (till the end of 2028). Perhaps the two times he was sent down was really about manipulation.

During the 21 days he was in Reno for the second time, he batted .333 and earned a call up again on July 11th. From July 11th-August 24th, he batted .315, with a homer and 14 RBI. He struck out 15 times, to 13 walks and was 9-1 in the stolen base department.

He had a 19 game on base streak from August 27th through September 17th, including a 9 game hitting streak. During the on base streak, he batted .373/420/.613 with 4 HRs and 18 RBI. He did strike out 13 times. During the 9 game hit streak itself, he batted .429, with 2 HRs and 10 RBI. He was 8-1 in stolen bases.

He cooled off substantially in the final 14 games of the season. He struck out 18 times, against only 2 walks, 1 extra base hit and batted .179.


McCarthy played all three outfield positions in 2022, with 312 innings in right, 243 in left, and 81 in center. He was also started 11 games at DH, as Torey Lovullo strove to spread around the playing time with a crowded outfield situation.

McCarthy rated -1 defensive runs saved at baseball reference and exactly 0 runs prevented above average according to statcast.

McCarthy finished in 4th place in the NL ROY voting. The highest finish by a Dback since Wade Miley finished 2nd to Bryce Harper in 2012. To round off the top 4 finishers for the Dbacks Chris Young finished 4th in 2007, Webb and Travis Lee 3rd in 2003 and 1998, respectively.

McCarthy narrowly beat out Drew Jameson for Snakepit Rookie of the Year. Just kidding. McCarthy got 81.6% of the votes. McCarthy posted an overall bWAR of 2.4. Here are his numbers before, in between and after the respective demotions.

To April 24: .120/.185/.240 = .425 OPS

May 20-June 14: .278/.328/.482 = .809 OPS

July 11 on: .302/.361/.434 = .795 OPS

Here is a Q/A with Steve Gilbert, on his 2022 rookie season.
McCarthy looks back on rookie year: ‘I found out a lot about myself’

Jake McCarthy 2022 Highlights (offensive)

All 8 of Jake McCarthy’s 2022 Home Runs

Varsho up next in reviews, but you’ll have to wait until next year for that!