Biographical

Portrait of John Axford

John Axford PDodgers

Dodgers Player Cards | Dodgers Team Audit | Dodgers Depth Chart

Career Summary
Years IP W L SV SO ERA
0 0.00
Birth Date4-1-1983
Height6' 5"
Weight220 lbs
Age35 years, 8 months, 15 days
BatsR
ThrowsR
0.12014
-0.52015
-0.02016
-0.62017
-0.22018
WARP Summary

MLB Statistics

Historical (past-seasons) WARP is now based on DRA..
cFIP and DRA are not available on a by-team basis and display as zeroes(0). See TOT line for season totals of these stats.
Multiple stints are are currently shownClick to hide.
YEAR Team Lg G GS IP W L SV H BB SO HR oppTAv PPF H/9 BB/9 HR/9 K/9 GB% BABIP TAv WHIP FIP ERA cFIP DRA DRA- WARP
2009 MIL MLB 7 0 7.7 0 0 1 5 6 9 0 .266 104 5.9 7.0 0.0 10.6 32% .263 .195 1.43 3.05 3.52 99 4.19 90.0 0.1
2010 MIL MLB 50 0 58.0 8 2 24 42 27 76 1 .269 96 6.5 4.2 0.2 11.8 50% .308 .219 1.19 2.15 2.48 72 2.97 67.0 1.3
2011 MIL MLB 74 0 73.7 2 2 46 59 25 86 4 .263 105 7.2 3.1 0.5 10.5 50% .289 .215 1.14 2.37 1.95 74 2.56 59.4 1.9
2012 MIL MLB 75 0 69.3 5 8 35 61 39 93 10 .263 109 7.9 5.1 1.3 12.1 48% .307 .262 1.44 4.09 4.67 99 4.47 102.5 0.3
2013 MIL 0 62 0 54.7 6 7 0 62 23 54 10 .257 107 10.2 3.8 1.6 8.9 46% .331 .278 1.55 4.74 4.45 103 4.36 104.4 0.2
2013 SLN 0 13 0 10.3 1 0 0 11 3 11 0 .244 108 9.6 2.6 0.0 9.6 55% .379 .225 1.35 2.05 1.74 100 4.74 113.4 0.0
2014 CLE 0 49 0 43.7 2 3 10 34 30 51 6 .260 103 7.0 6.2 1.2 10.5 55% .259 .271 1.47 4.74 3.92 99 4.43 108.7 0.0
2014 PIT 0 13 0 11.0 0 1 0 9 6 12 0 .245 101 7.4 4.9 0.0 9.8 54% .321 .254 1.36 2.83 4.09 92 3.87 94.8 0.1
2015 COL MLB 60 0 55.7 4 5 25 56 32 62 4 .273 113 9.1 5.2 0.6 10.0 56% .342 .254 1.58 3.59 4.20 99 5.50 128.6 -0.5
2016 OAK MLB 68 0 65.7 6 4 3 65 30 60 6 .261 95 8.9 4.1 0.8 8.2 56% .311 .263 1.45 3.97 3.97 101 5.00 110.5 0.0
2017 OAK MLB 22 0 21.0 0 1 0 27 17 21 3 .272 103 11.6 7.3 1.3 9.0 51% .364 .324 2.10 5.70 6.43 112 7.54 160.4 -0.6
2018 LAN 0 5 0 3.7 0 0 0 8 2 4 0 .262 112 19.6 4.9 0.0 9.8 67% .533 .461 2.73 3.39 17.18 96 6.82 152.4 -0.1
2018 TOR 0 45 1 51.0 4 1 0 44 20 50 6 .260 107 7.8 3.5 1.1 8.8 54% .286 .236 1.25 4.05 4.41 100 5.13 114.6 -0.1
2013 TOT MLB 75 0 65.0 7 7 0 73 26 65 10 .255 107 10.1 3.6 1.4 9.0 47% .339 .270 1.52 4.31 4.02 103 4.42 105.9 0.1
2014 TOT MLB 62 0 54.7 2 4 10 43 36 63 6 .257 102 7.1 5.9 1.0 10.4 55% .272 .268 1.45 4.35 3.95 98 4.32 105.9 0.1
2018 TOT MLB 50 1 54.7 4 1 0 52 22 54 6 .260 107 8.6 3.6 1.0 8.9 55% .311 .257 1.35 4.01 5.27 99 5.25 117.2 -0.2
CareerMLB5431525.3383414448326058950.2631048.34.50.910.152%.312.2541.413.663.87944.39100.72.5

Statistics for All Levels

'opp' stats - Quality of opponents faced - have been moved and are available only as OPP_QUAL in the Statistics reports now.
Minor league stats are currently shownClick to hide.
YEAR Team Lg G GS IP W L SV H BB SO HR oppTAv PPF H/9 BB/9 HR/9 K/9 GB% BABIP TAv WHIP FIP ERA cFIP DRA DRA-
2007 CSC A 13 5 26.7 0 3 0 29 22 21 2 .253 94 9.8 7.4 0.7 7.1 50% .321 .304 1.91 5.36 4.38 0 0.00 0.0
2007 STA A- 8 0 24.3 1 1 2 13 15 30 0 .261 93 4.8 5.6 0.0 11.1 46% .232 .193 1.15 2.94 2.22 0 0.00 0.0
2007 TAM A+ 5 0 11.3 0 0 2 6 7 15 2 .243 101 4.8 5.6 1.6 11.9 30% .190 .234 1.15 4.80 2.39 0 0.00 0.0
2007 SWB AAA 1 0 0.7 0 0 0 2 1 1 0 .273 89 25.7 12.9 0.0 12.9 0% .667 .470 4.29 4.59 12.86 0 0.00 0.0
2008 BRV A+ 26 14 95.0 5 10 0 86 73 89 5 .250 97 8.1 6.9 0.5 8.4 47% .310 .283 1.67 4.48 4.55 0 0.00 0.0
2009 MIL MLB 7 0 7.7 0 0 1 5 6 9 0 .266 104 5.9 7.0 0.0 10.6 32% .263 .195 1.43 3.05 3.52 99 4.19 90.0
2009 BRV A+ 19 0 27.7 4 1 0 14 16 43 0 .242 98 4.5 5.2 0.0 14.0 45% .275 .180 1.08 1.82 1.62 0 0.00 0.0
2009 HUN AA 4 0 7.7 0 0 1 7 3 9 1 .281 90 8.2 3.5 1.2 10.5 20% .316 .260 1.30 4.00 3.51 0 0.00 0.0
2009 NAS AAA 22 0 33.0 5 0 0 23 19 37 2 .274 89 6.3 5.2 0.5 10.1 54% .263 .242 1.27 3.72 3.55 0 0.00 0.0
2010 MIL MLB 50 0 58.0 8 2 24 42 27 76 1 .269 96 6.5 4.2 0.2 11.8 50% .308 .219 1.19 2.15 2.48 72 2.97 67.0
2010 NAS AAA 12 0 13.3 3 2 2 14 5 19 0 .269 103 9.5 3.4 0.0 12.9 53% .412 .223 1.43 1.85 2.03 0 0.00 0.0
2011 MIL MLB 74 0 73.7 2 2 46 59 25 86 4 .263 105 7.2 3.1 0.5 10.5 50% .289 .215 1.14 2.37 1.95 74 2.56 59.4
2012 MIL MLB 75 0 69.3 5 8 35 61 39 93 10 .263 109 7.9 5.1 1.3 12.1 48% .307 .262 1.44 4.09 4.67 99 4.47 102.5
2013 MIL MLB 62 0 54.7 6 7 0 62 23 54 10 .257 107 10.2 3.8 1.6 8.9 46% .331 .278 1.55 4.74 4.45 103 4.36 104.4
2013 SLN MLB 13 0 10.3 1 0 0 11 3 11 0 .244 108 9.6 2.6 0.0 9.6 55% .379 .225 1.35 2.05 1.74 100 4.74 113.4
2013 CAN int 2 0 1.7 0 0 0 2 0 2 0 .000 10.8 0.0 0.0 10.8 0% .400 .000 1.20 1.23 5.40 0 0.00 0.0
2014 CLE MLB 49 0 43.7 2 3 10 34 30 51 6 .260 103 7.0 6.2 1.2 10.5 55% .259 .271 1.47 4.74 3.92 99 4.43 108.7
2014 PIT MLB 13 0 11.0 0 1 0 9 6 12 0 .245 101 7.4 4.9 0.0 9.8 54% .321 .254 1.36 2.83 4.09 92 3.87 94.8
2015 COL MLB 60 0 55.7 4 5 25 56 32 62 4 .273 113 9.1 5.2 0.6 10.0 56% .342 .254 1.58 3.59 4.20 99 5.50 128.6
2016 OAK MLB 68 0 65.7 6 4 3 65 30 60 6 .261 95 8.9 4.1 0.8 8.2 56% .311 .263 1.45 3.97 3.97 101 5.00 110.5
2017 OAK MLB 22 0 21.0 0 1 0 27 17 21 3 .272 103 11.6 7.3 1.3 9.0 51% .364 .324 2.10 5.70 6.43 112 7.54 160.4
2017 NAS AAA 3 0 3.3 0 0 0 2 0 4 0 .279 5.4 0.0 0.0 10.8 43% .286 .099 0.60 1.32 0.00 130 4.87 102.6
2018 LAN MLB 5 0 3.7 0 0 0 8 2 4 0 .262 112 19.6 4.9 0.0 9.8 67% .533 .461 2.73 3.39 17.18 96 6.82 152.4
2018 TOR MLB 45 1 51.0 4 1 0 44 20 50 6 .260 107 7.8 3.5 1.1 8.8 54% .286 .236 1.25 4.05 4.41 100 5.13 114.6

Plate Discipline

YEAR Pits Zone% Swing% Contact% Z-Swing% O-Swing% Z-Contact% O-Contact% SwStr%
2009 134 0.5299 0.4104 0.7636 0.5634 0.2381 0.8000 0.6667 0.2364
2010 959 0.4442 0.4275 0.7000 0.5751 0.3096 0.8041 0.5455 0.3000
2011 1236 0.4984 0.4215 0.7409 0.5714 0.2726 0.8182 0.5799 0.2591
2012 1397 0.4653 0.4352 0.7401 0.6369 0.2597 0.8333 0.5412 0.2599
2013 1170 0.4573 0.4265 0.7435 0.6280 0.2567 0.8542 0.5153 0.2565
2014 1029 0.4723 0.3936 0.7185 0.5947 0.2136 0.7993 0.5172 0.2815
2015 1055 0.4730 0.4445 0.7441 0.6733 0.2392 0.8244 0.5414 0.2559
2016 1176 0.4736 0.4405 0.7394 0.6535 0.2488 0.8022 0.5909 0.2606
2017 471 0.4607 0.4013 0.7989 0.5945 0.2362 0.8837 0.6167 0.2011
2018 916 0.4694 0.4203 0.7818 0.6372 0.2284 0.8540 0.6036 0.2182
Career95430.47020.42530.74190.61950.25300.82650.55850.2581

Injury History  —  No longer being updated

Last Update: 12/31/2014 23:59 ET

Date On Date Off Transaction Days Games Side Body Part Injury Severity Surgery Date Reaggravation
2011-02-16 2011-03-04 Camp 16 0 General Medical Gastrointestinal Food Poisoning -
2003-04-15 2003-04-15 Coll 0 0 Right Elbow Surgery Tommy John Surgery - Date Is Approximate - -

Compensation

Year Team Salary
2018 TOR $1,500,000
2017 OAK $5,500,000
2016 OAK $4,500,000
2015 COL $2,600,000
2014 CLE $4,500,000
2013 MIL $5,000,000
2012 MIL $525,000
2011 MIL $442,500
YearsDescriptionSalary
7 yrPrevious$23,067,500
2018Current$1,500,000
8 yrPvs + Cur$24,567,500
8 yrTotal$24,567,500

 

Service TimeAgentContract Status
7 y 118 dDan Horwits1 year/$1.5M (2018)

Details
  • 1 year (2018). Signed by Toronto as a free agent 2/8/18 (minor-league contract). Salary of $1.5M in majors. Contract selected by Toronto 3/29/18. Acquired by LA Dodgers in trade from Toronto 7/31/18 with $491,935 remaining on contract.
  • 2 years/$10M (2016-17). Signed by Oakland as a free agent 12/11/15. 16:$4.5M, 17:$5.5M. Performance bonuses: $0.25M each for 30, 35, 40, 45, 50 games finished. 2017 salary increases by half of the amount of bonuses earned in 2016. DFA by Oakland 7/27/17. Released 8/1/17.
  • 1 year (2015). Signed by Colorado as a free agent 2/3/15 (minor-league contract). Salary of $2.6M in majors. Performance bonuses. Contract selected by Colorado 3/1/15. Placed on restricted list 4/19/15 (son's illness). DFA by Colorado 11/20/15. Elected free agency 11/25/15.
  • 1 year/$4.5M (2014). Signed by Cleveland as a free agent 12/16/13. Performance bonuses: $0.25M for 38 games finished. $0.3M each for 43, 48, 53, 58, 63 GF. Claimed by Pittsburgh off waivers from Cleveland 8/14/14. DFA by Pittsburgh 10/25/14. Sent outright to Triple-A 11/3/14.
  • 1 year/$5M (2013). Re-signed by Milwaukee 1/18/13 (avoided arbitration). Performance bonuses. Acquired by St. Louis in trade from Milwaukee 8/30/13. Non-tendered by St. Louis 12/2/13.
  • 1 year/$0.525M (2012). Renewed by Milwaukee 3/2/12.
  • 1 year/$0.4255M (2011). Re-signed by Milwaukee 3/1/11.
  • 1 year (2010). Re-signed by Milwaukee 2/23/10.
  • 1 year (2009). Contract purchased by Milwaukee 9/7/09.
  • 1 year (2008). Signed by Milwaukee as a free agent (minor-league contract).
  • Signed by NY Yankees 2007 as an amateur free agent.
  • Drafted by Cincinnati 2005 (42-1,259) (Notre Dame). Did not sign.

2018 Preseason Forecast

Last Update: 1/27/2017 12:35 ET

PCT W L SV G GS IP H BB SO HR BABIP WHIP ERA DRA VORP WARP
90o 0.7 0.7 0 15 0 30.5 26 13 27 3 .267 1.26 3.49 3.69 2.4 0.3
80o 0.7 0.7 0 15 0 25.2 23 11 22 2 .283 1.36 3.89 4.11 1.8 0.2
70o 0.7 0.8 0 15 0 21.5 20 10 19 2 .294 1.43 4.18 4.42 1.3 0.1
60o 0.7 0.8 0 15 0 18.4 18 9 16 2 .303 1.50 4.43 4.69 0.8 0.1
50o 0.7 0.8 0 15 0 15.6 16 8 14 2 .312 1.56 4.67 4.95 0.4 0.0
40o 0.7 0.8 0 15 0 12.9 14 7 11 1 .321 1.63 4.92 5.21 0.0 0.0
30o 0.7 0.8 0 15 0 10.1 11 6 9 1 .331 1.70 5.19 5.49 -0.4 0.0
20o 0.7 0.8 0 15 0 6.9 8 4 6 1 .342 1.79 5.51 5.83 -1.0 -0.1
10o 0.6 0.9 0 15 0 2.6 3 2 2 0 .358 1.92 5.96 6.32 -1.8 -0.2
Weighted Mean0.70.8015014.9158132.3101.554.644.910.50.1

Preseason Long-Term Forecast (Beyond the 2018 Projections)

Playing time estimates are based on performance, not Depth Charts.
Year Age W L SV G GS IP H BB SO HR GB% BABIP WHIP ERA DRA H/9 BB/9 K/9 HR/9 WARP
20193621244041432037550.3131.554.744.929.54.48.21.10.2
20203721244041432136550.3121.554.754.939.44.67.81.10.2
20213821243040422034550.3131.554.895.089.54.57.61.10.1
20223921245042442136550.3131.564.794.989.54.57.81.10.1
20234021246043452137550.3111.554.774.959.54.47.81.10.2
20244121242039422033550.3131.584.855.049.64.67.61.10.1
20254221239037391830450.3131.554.895.089.64.47.41.00.1
20264321236033361628450.3141.564.925.119.74.37.61.10.1
20274421238035381729450.3131.574.925.119.84.47.51.00.1

Comparable Players (Similarity Index 82)

Rank Score Name Year Run Average Trend
1 93 Scott Eyre 2007 4.47
2 92 Fernando Rodney 2012 1.08
3 91 Luis Vizcaino 2010 0.00 DNP
4 91 George Sherrill 2012 27.00
5 91 Mike DeJean 2006 0.00
6 89 Kevin Gregg 2013 3.77
7 89 Trever Miller 2008 4.36
8 89 Jason Frasor 2013 2.76
9 88 Kerry Wood 2012 8.31
10 88 Scot Shields 2011 0.00 DNP
11 88 Chad Durbin 2013 9.56
12 88 Scott Downs 2011 2.01
13 85 Brian Fuentes 2011 4.63
14 85 Akinori Otsuka 2007 2.78
15 85 Jose Veras 2016 0.00 DNP
16 85 J.C. Romero 2011 5.11
17 85 Guillermo Mota 2009 3.44
18 84 Hideki Okajima 2011 4.32
19 84 Michael Gonzalez 2013 5.04
20 84 Damaso Marte 2010 4.08
21 84 Jim Brewer 1973 3.39
22 84 Mike Stanton 2002 3.23
23 84 Joe Thatcher 2017 0.00 DNP
24 84 Jay Howell 1991 3.35
25 83 Kyle Farnsworth 2011 2.34
26 83 Brad Lidge 2012 9.64
27 83 Hoyt Wilhelm 1958 2.82
28 83 Heath Bell 2013 4.11
29 83 Jim Gott 1995 7.47
30 83 Luis Arroyo 1962 5.35 DNP
31 83 Mike Henneman 1997 0.00 DNP
32 82 Gene Garber 1983 5.79
33 82 Jeff Parrett 1997 0.00 DNP
34 82 Kiko Calero 2010 0.00 DNP
35 82 Jon Rauch 2014 0.00 DNP
36 82 Oliver Perez 2017 4.64
37 82 Armando Benitez 2008 7.11
38 82 Jason Grilli 2012 3.07
39 82 Justin Speier 2009 5.18
40 82 Will Ohman 2013 0.00 DNP
41 82 Jose Valverde 2013 5.59
42 81 Mike Lincoln 2010 7.32
43 81 Stu Miller 1963 2.88
44 81 Brendan Donnelly 2007 3.48
45 81 Chad Qualls 2014 3.86
46 80 Dave Veres 2002 3.70
47 80 Dustin McGowan 2017 4.87
48 80 Craig Breslow 2016 5.79
49 80 Joey Eischen 2005 3.72
50 80 Tug McGraw 1980 1.56
51 80 Scott Schoeneweis 2009 7.88
52 80 Joe Hoerner 1972 4.80
53 79 Bob Locker 1973 3.39
54 79 John Franco 1996 2.50
55 79 Kerry Ligtenberg 2006 0.00 DNP
56 79 Gary Lavelle 1984 3.21
57 79 Javier Lopez 2013 2.29
58 79 Larry Andersen 1988 3.05
59 79 Mike Jackson 2000 0.00 DNP
60 79 Randy Myers 1998 4.92
61 79 Joe Beimel 2012 0.00 DNP
62 79 Francisco Cordero 2010 3.96
63 79 Dick Drago 1980 4.55
64 79 Dave Giusti 1975 3.73 DNP
65 79 Ramon Hernandez 1976 3.43
66 79 Mike MacDougal 2012 7.94
67 79 Eddie Guardado 2006 4.62
68 78 Jared Burton 2016 0.00 DNP
69 78 Jay Witasick 2008 0.00 DNP
70 78 Shawn Camp 2011 4.88
71 78 Brandon Lyon 2015 0.00 DNP
72 78 Tippy Martinez 1985 6.30
73 78 John Hiller 1978 2.63
74 78 Luis Ayala 2013 3.00
75 78 Francisco Rodriguez 2017 8.17
76 78 Troy Percival 2005 5.76
77 78 Jason Motte 2017 3.54
78 78 Roberto Hernandez 2000 4.05
79 78 Norm Charlton 1998 5.44
80 78 Lindy McDaniel 1971 5.30
81 78 Matt Thornton 2012 3.74
82 78 Steve Farr 1992 1.73
83 78 Dave Smith 1990 2.69
84 78 Pat Neshek 2016 3.26
85 78 Ryan Madson 2016 3.76
86 78 Dale Thayer 2016 0.00 DNP
87 78 Bill Campbell 1984 4.76
88 78 Jeff Nelson 2002 4.14
89 78 Doug Jones 1992 2.34
90 77 Tom Gordon 2003 3.41
91 77 Dan Plesac 1997 3.93
92 77 Scott Sauerbeck 2007 0.00 DNP
93 77 Mike Marshall 1978 2.91
94 77 Bobby Tiefenauer 1965 5.81
95 77 Jim Brower 2008 0.00 DNP
96 77 Antonio Alfonseca 2007 5.62
97 77 Jeff Montgomery 1997 3.64
98 77 Neal Cotts 2015 3.69
99 77 Mike Timlin 2001 4.21
100 77 Jeff Brantley 1999 6.23

Platoon

SORT_FIELD PLATOON AVG OBP SLG TAv
10 vs L (Multi) .249 .332 .342 .248
11 vs R (Multi) .258 .351 .388 .272
18 Split (Multi) -.009 -.019 -.046 -.025
19 LgAvg (Multi) .006 .020 .015 .013
30 vs L (2016) .256 .321 .350 .247
31 vs R (2016) .259 .359 .385 .277
38 Split (2016) -.003 -.038 -.035 -.030
39 LgAvg (2016) .003 .018 .013 .012

Definition of multi-year splits

BP Annual Player Comments

YearComment
2018 John Axford spent years using whiffs and grounders to overcome an inability to pound the zone, but we've yet to see a pitcher survive seven-plus walks per nine, especially when it's paired with a velocity dip. The A's cut him in July.
2017 Axford has two primary tools in his wheelhouse: consistent velocity on his heater and an uncanny ability to correctly predict Oscar winners. During the first year of his two-year deal with the A's, Axford’s fastball velocity registered a slight uptick from 2015, but failed to generate the high strikeout rate and sub-3.00 DRA of seasons past. A move from the high-octane environment of Coors Field to the temperate climate of Oakland Coliseum did wonders for his walk rate, but his poor location led to seven blown saves—one for each incorrect prediction he made during the 2016 Academy Awards.
2016 The 2011 recipient of the Mustached American of the Year Award grew out a beard that he described to the Denver Post as having “a better cornucopia of colors” than beard rival Charlie Blackmon's. That was preseason, when things were fun. In an awful turn of events, Axford missed the first few weeks of the season to be with his 2-year-old son, who was in intensive care after being bitten by a rattlesnake during spring training. The father returned to the team just before Adam Ottavino underwent Tommy John surgery and subsequently took over ninth-inning duties. He adjusted well to Colorado's thin air, pitching lower in the zone and racking up grounders at a career-high rate. Walks remain the chief issue for Axford, and late innings with him can still be an adventure. That could eventually spell trouble for the coloring of his teammates' beards, though at least the A's won't have him pitching the ninth unless something goes badly awry.
2015 A recurring theme throughout this section sees the Pirates, led by pitching coach Ray Searage and special assistant Jim Benedict, aiding forlorn pitchers. This strategy is forced by necessity rather than organizational choice: The Pirates can't afford pitchers with good stuff and results, so they gather worthy reclamation projects—those with talent who are anchored by (fixable) mechanical deficiencies—and help them fulfill their promise. Axford, an in-season waiver-claim from the Indians, seemed like a tight fit. His arsenal, late-inning worthy, has been plagued by command and pitch-tipping woes throughout his career. Yet the Pirates were unable to get him back in shape before the season ended. A failure? Perhaps. But therein lies the beauty of Pittsburgh's approach: The cost is low enough that a miss here and there won't sink the ship. As for Axford, look for him to frustrate again before getting shipped midyear to another NL Central club—the Reds, let's say—and continuing his divisional tour.
2014 Small sample, confirmation bias, whateverno one was surprised to see Axford have success with the Cardinals. They had one of those Midas seasons where everything they touched turned to groundballs and strike throwers. Axford had already shown real talent with the Brewers, but he couldn't find the plate consistently and, when he did, missed location. So of course he has a 5 percent walk rate, doesn't allow a homer in his 13 appearances with St. Louis and gets a decent payday from Cleveland in December. He's got enough saves under his belt that he'll forever be talked about for an open ninth inning, but with his command he's strictly a second-tier closer.
2013 If they were to analyze Milwaukees 2012 outbreak of Bullpen Dropsy, forensic epidemiologists would have little difficulty identifying Axford as Patient Zero. The Brewers closer maintained his frequently overpowering stuff, but struggled with his command and had difficulty throwing his curveball for strikes, making it easier for hitters to sit on his fastball. The resultant swelling of his home-run and walk rates led to a disastrous series of blown saves culminating in a brief dismissal from ninth-inning duties. On the plus side, Axford rebounded down the stretch, and his fastball can still dent walls and generate enough strikeouts to overcome his always-iffy walk rate. As with most flamethrowers of his ilk, hes likely to toggle from dominance to combustibility and back again for years to come.
2012 Even though Axford was dominant as a closer down the stretch in 2010, there remained some concerns over his control entering 2011. With six walks in his first seven outings (6 1/3 IP) in 2011 contributing to his 8.53 ERA, the worst fears appeared to be coming true. But "Ax Man" sharpened his stuff after that, striking out 80 while walking just 19 the rest of the way. He rarely needs his good curve or slider with his high heat having plenty of movement and velocity, but when either is working in a game, he's as tough an assignment as anyone.
2011 Axford has become a fan favorite due more to his facial-hair experiments and rags-to-riches back-story than his stuff, but his mid-90s fastball and sharp-breaking off-speed pitches are no flukethey generate more than enough swings and misses to work in the ninth inning. The question with him has always been control. Last year Axford walked a little over four men per nine innings, while his minor-league stat line suffered from over six free passes per nine. Relievers with walk rates that high tend to lose their grip on the closer reins as managers grow frustrated with their self-inflicted jams. While its possible that Axford has developed a newfound ability to find the strike zone and will spend the next half-decade closing games at Miller Park, its just as likely that Brewers fans will wake up one morning to discover that yesterdays Rollie Fingers has morphed into todays Derrick Turnbow. Youve been warned.
2010 A lanky Canadian reliever who worked his mid-90s fastball all the way from High-A to Miller Park in a single season, Axford has posted consistently high strikeout rates throughout his minor-league career. But command has always been his bugbear, and while 2009 saw his lowest walk rates to date, he still handed out a plethora of free passes (five per nine innings). The combination of live arm and small paycheck means he should have a good shot at going north with the big club, but if Axford cant do a better job of avoiding ball four, he wont be there long.

BP Articles

Click here to see articles tagged with John Axford

BP Chats

DateQuestionAnswer
2016-08-01 16:00:00 (link to chat)I hate closers. Just lost Davis in a 16 team league. Have Edwin Diaz helping me with ratios but no saves yet. Took a flyer before deadline and picked up both Ryan Dull & Edubray Ramos but seems neither their respective clubs made deals. Should I move on from these 2 & look to add Hudson or Axford. Need a closer for the home stretch for saves. Your thoughts would be much appreciated. Thanks
(Jerry from Earth)
Jake Barrett and not Hudson is going to close in Arizona and John Axford isn't any closer to the job. Hang on to Edwin Diaz and hope that Steve Cishek blows another save or two this week. (Mike Gianella)
2013-04-10 20:00:00 (link to chat)So, who do you have finishing the season with the most saves for the Cubs, Cards and Brewers? thanks
(Kevin from Boston)
For the Cubs, I would have to guess Kyuji Fujikawa. Carlos Marmol might get the job again, but he would probably be put in there to showcase him for a trade. Trevor Rosenthal isn't the closer now in St. Louis, but Mitchell Boggs has already struggled so if I'm going to guess, I'm going to guess the guy with the skills and the stuff. Milwaukee is a mystery to me. I thought John Axford would lose the job but had no idea it would happen so quickly. I would guess Jim Henderson, but he has some of the same control/command issues that Ax does/did. My sleeper in this pen is Brandon Kintzler, but I don't see Kintzler as having a path to the job at the moment. (Mike Gianella)
2013-04-03 14:00:00 (link to chat)Let's say you were a bird, and you had to fly to any baseball city and sit on top of any ballpark to watch John Axford in a 1980s exercise show with the Muppet Babies , would you rather buy Scooter "Ryan" Gennett in a keeper dynasty rotisserie auction fantasy league or read a prospect "Trevor" story about household pests?
(John Axford from Iowa)
And that pretty much sums it up. Sorry for driving this trainwreck. Hope you all had fun. I had fun! Logging off now, see you next time. (Sam Miller)
2013-02-08 13:00:00 (link to chat)Which major leaguer wins an episode of Chopped?
(Jake Mintz from Maryland)
Can John Axford cook? I feel like he can. Maybe it's just the mustache. I bet Pablo Sandoval can whip up a pretty decent spread too. (Ian Miller)
2011-08-04 13:00:00 (link to chat)Howdy Jay ... thanks for chatting. Your choices for best mustaches currently in MLB are? More seriously ... at a certain point, prospects lose their optimal value if something isn't done with them. Is Montero's value "past prime"? Should Cashman have dealt any of his stable for "something", even if the (perceived) talent exchange was negative for the Yanks?
(dianagramr from NYC)
Hey Diana! John Axford has a pretty remarkable mustache. I haven't seen Dale Thayer lately and am not even sure he's on the Mets' 25-man roster, but he's got a fantastic mustache. I'm pretty sure Brendan Ryan's infield triple owes its entirety to the awesome power of the 'stache.

As for prospects, while I agree that they lose their optimal value at some point, I reject the notion that Montero's time has passed - he's 21 freakin' years old! I don't at all think there was any reason for Cashman to trade his blue chippers for "something" just to look busy. This isn't McDonalds, where if you've got time to lean, you've got time to clean. (Jay Jaffe)
2011-05-18 13:00:00 (link to chat)Who do you think is the next guy to nab a closer job? I'm talking about unheralded guys like John Axford last year as opposed to the sexy setup guys from the preseason like Daniel Bard and Jake McGee.
(Aaron from YYZ)
I'll say Kevin Jepsen of the Angels. (John Perrotto)
2011-04-12 13:00:00 (link to chat)Hi Ben What are the chances that Zach Braddock will be closing this year or next? Thanks
(Ed from Cranford, NJ)
I guess that depends on the chances that John Axford won't be closing this year or next. Here's what we said on that subject in this year's annual:

"Relievers with walk rates that high tend to lose their grip on the closer reins as managers grow frustrated with their self-inflicted jams. While it's possible that Axford has developed a newfound ability to find the strike zone and will spend the next half-decade closing games at Miller Park, it's just as likely that Brewers fans will wake up one morning to discover that yesterday's Rollie Fingers has morphed into today's Derrick Turnbow."

I don't think Axford is about to enter Turnbow territory, but there are certainly unlikelier closer candidates than Braddock. His talents would be wasted in the bullpen, though: with a name like that, he really should've been a cowboy or a spaceship captain. (Ben Lindbergh)
2010-07-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)Which closer loses his job first, regardless of cause (injury/ineffectiveness/etc): Axford, Simon, Street, Wagner
(Andy from Chicago)
Alfredo Simon. John Axford's mustache precludes him from long-term ineffectiveness, and also acts as a self-healing miracle worker. (Marc Normandin)


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