Hot Rod of the Day 4/13/14: Johnny Field

By Fletcher Keel

The woes for the Bowling Green Hot Rods continued yesterday, as they found themselves on the wrong end of an absolute slugfest against the Peoria Chiefs and dropped the second game of the three game weekend series by a wild 11-8 final score.

While it’s becoming harder to see as the losses rain down (yesterday’s being the seventh in a row), it’s good to see the offense come out of the season hot, with Bowling Green having scored at least five runs in seven of the first nine games. With the high scoring, it wasn’t odd to see several guys have great days at the plate, but in the case of Johnny Field, he had a day to remember early in his career, by blasting two home runs – one to lead off the game, and the other in the sixth with two teammates on base.

2014 marks the first season Field has spent time in Bowling Green, but has a previous connection to the Hot Rods: his high school alma mater, Bishop Gorman High School, is the same of 2012 Hot Rods first baseman Jeff MalmNot only that, but Field also attended the same college, the University of Arizona, as 2013 Hot Rod outfielder Joey Rickard.

Field, who was a 2013 fifth round draft pick (the same draft class as our previous Hot Rod of the Day, Kean Wong), was brought in nearly exclusively for his presence at the plate, as he is known to use all parts of the field when hitting. Upon being drafted, scouts also said that while at Arizona he had some power that could be developed, and in the past couple of days it has come to fruition, as Field has hit all three of his home runs so far this season over the past two games. After playing left field and second base in college, Field finds himself in centerfield for the Hot Rods, and his profile will be raised considerably if he can stay at the position long-term.

Aside from Field’s home runs, he came into score on one other occasion, as he was knocked in thanks to a Granden Goetzman double in the top of the third inning. Field also showed great patience at the plate, by drawing two walks, and swiping second base. Field is currently positioned at the top of the Bowling Green batting order, and has had two games worthy of the spot. If he keeps it up, he’ll be more of an nontraditional lead-off man, like Atlanta’s Jason Heywardhe has proven he has power, can hit for average, is patient at the plate and has speed, now all he has to do is put those offensive tools to work day in and day out, and it’s going to be an adventure to begin the game defensively for Bowling Green’s opponents.

For now, Johnny Field is an advanced college player leading off games in style for the Hot Rods. For the future, it will be interesting to see how his tools play at higher levels. With plate discipline, speed, and the power he has shown in the past few games, Field is not your typical low-upside college draft pick. The Hot Rods are lucky to have him for this season.