| Seasons | 2003 | Teams | South Bend Silver Hawks |
2003 East: | Battle Creek | Dayton | Fort Wayne | Lansing | South Bend | West Michigan |

2003 Scouting Report

South Bend Silver Hawks

Major Change

2003 Teams
Battle Creek
Cedar Rapids
Fort Wayne
Kane County
Quad City
South Bend
West Michigan

This page profiles the 2003 South Bend Silver Hawks, a Single-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks and a member of the Midwest League.


Post-Season Profile

They were better than I expected. Despite losing a key player to their divisional rivals, the Silver Hawks won the division in the second half; in fact, they started playing well in May and kept it up through the end of the season. The team overcame a weak start by turning around their offense; in the second half, this team scored well, and won consistently. The pitching was decent, if unexceptional; South Bend's defense was very good.

First baseman Sean Luellwitz, while perhaps a little old for the MWL, was SB's best player all summer; he has good power and posted generally fine numbers. Luellwitz was the team's only power hitter, all year. Catcher Jon-Mark Sprowl, lost to Battle Creek in a mid-summer trade, played very well in SB and may have been more valuable overall. There were some good base runners, of whom outfielder Jarrod Ball stood out. Outfielder Doc Brooks' arrival via trade appeared to mark the turnaround in the team's overall play, while third baseman Mayobanex Santana's late-season contributions helped keep things afloat after Sprowl was traded.

Starters Adriano Rosario, Jared Doyle, Dustin Nippert, and Sam Smith all routinely kept the games close. That said, spot starter Sergio Lizarraga probably had the best season on this staff, and Matty Wilkinson had an exceptional season in the closer role. While the bullpen had some weak players, there was enough talent for manager Von Hayes to keep the Hawks in the game.

Except where otherwise specified, all statistics are through the end of the season.

MWL Fan's Guide

Season Summary

  • Second Half: 44-26, .629 (1st place, 3.5 ahead--Second Half Champion)
  • First Half: 28-38, .424 (6th place, 11.0 behind)
  • Pitching: 72-64, 3.31, 35 saves, 7 complete games, 863 strikeouts
  • Hitting: .261, 597 runs, 62 HR, 143 steals (69% success)
  • Defense: 148 errors (1.09 per game); .708 defensive efficiency
  • April: 6-17 (.261)
  • May: 17-13 (.566)
  • June: 13-11 (.542)
  • July: 18-11 (.621)
  • August/September: 18-12 (.600)
  • Playoff Round 1: 0-2 (.000)
  • Position Players used: 24
  • Pitchers used: 20
    • Includes one position player used in a mop-up role.

Leading Players

  • Best Player on the Team: First Baseman Sean Luellwitz

  • Best Starting Pitcher: Sergio Lizarraga (1.78, 9-2, 85 strikeouts)
  • Bullpen Stopper: Matty Wilkinson (2.29, 3-6, 30 saves, 80 strikeouts)
  • Strikeout Pitchers: Dustin Nippert, Matty Wilkinson
  • Control Pitchers: Adriano Rosario, Dustin Nippert

  • Best Hitter: Sean Luellwitz (.291, 18 HR, 79 RBI)
  • Home Run Leader: Sean Luellwitz (18)
  • High Batting Average: Mayobanex Santana (.302), Jon-Mark Sprowl (.321--includes Battle Creek)
  • High On Base Percentage: Jon-Mark Sprowl (.425--includes BC), Daniel Tosca (.414)
  • High Slugging Percentage: Sean Luellwitz (.480)
  • Notable Baserunners: Sean Luellwitz, Jarred Ball, Nilson Teilon, Mayobanex Santana, Jeff Cook, Phil Avlas, Rich Barrett, Brandon Simon
  • Notable Batting Eye: Jon-Mark Sprowl, Daniel Tosca

The Silver Hawks at Mid-Season

The Silver Hawks have scored 268 runs and have permitted 292 runs. Von Hayes uses 3.2 pitchers per game.

South Bend started terribly, then spent the half re-tooling. The results show in the players used counts, and in an improved team. The offense still doesn't score well enough, and the pitching remains about league-average. While I don't expect them to lead the division in the second half, they should be reasonably competitive.

First baseman Sean Luellwitz is developing very nicely, and is now the best hitter on the team--with catcher Jon-Mark Sprowl [since traded to Battle Creek] just a step or two behind him, and perhaps more valuable overall. Second baseman Neb Brown and outfielder Jarred Ball have also been solid contributors. There's basically no bench.

Dustin Nippert and Sam Smith front a basically sound, though unexciting, pitching rotation. Relievers Sergio Lizarraga, Heath Heiberger, and Enrique Gonzalez have done very well in a variety of roles, though beyond these the bullpen's probably a bit weak. On the whole, this is a staff of control pitchers; they rarely throw wild pitches or hit batters.

Promoted and missed: No one.

Worth watching: No one who's not already playing daily.

May 20 Profile

As usual, the Silver Hawks are in the Eastern Division cellar. South Bend's team has a more-or-less average pitching staff, but the offense is abysmal. This team's defense is more or less average for an MWL squad.

Catcher Jon-Mark Sprowl is a capable if unspectacular hitter, and first baseman Sean Luellwitz is contributing some power. Outfielder Jarred Ball's shown no power but gets on base fairly well and is a serious threat to steal when he reaches first, while utility player Nilson Teilon shows some promise as an all-round hitter.

While Sam Smith's been easily the most successful pitcher on this staff, rotation mates Dustin Nippert, Jared Doyle, and Adriano Rosario have pitched about as well. No reliever's been particularly impressive, yet.

Pre-Season Profile


No information; this is Von Hayes' first year as a manager.

First Round Draft Selections


Team Age Information

  • Average Team Age: 21.9
  • Pitchers: 22.1
  • Hitters: 21.7
  • Oldest Player on the Team: Matt Wilkinson (October 25, 1977)
  • Youngest Player on the Team: Adruabi Rosario (May 16, 1985)

The average player in the Midwest League this season is about 21.7 years old.

Where they played last season

This summary was based on the team's opening day roster and will not be revised to reflect roster changes.

Many of the 2003 Silver Hawk position players played in Yakima last season, while the heart of the pitching staff was a Missoula.

Team         League          W/L     Place    Hitters Pitchers
Lancaster    California (A+) 63/77    8(10)       2     2
South Bend   Midwest (A)     52/87   14(14)       5     3
Yakima       Northwest (A-)  23/53    8(8)        8     5
Missoula     Pioneer (R+)    35/41   T6(8)        3     6

Several of the 2002 Silver Hawks played for two of these teams and are counted twice in this table. One did not play professionally last season.

South Bend


South Bend

The Midwest League plays Single-A, professional baseball in America's agricultural and industrial heartland. 16 teams play a 140 game schedule which begins in early April and ends Labor Day weekend.

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