- Full name Gabriel Guerrero
- Born 12/11/1993 in Nizao, Dominican Republic
- Profile Ht.: 6'3" / Wt.: 215 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- Debut 09/04/2018
Organization Prospect Rankings
The Diamondbacks acquired Guerrero, the nephew of 2004 American League MVP Vladimir Guerrero, from the Mariners in June 2015 as part of the return for Mark Trumbo. After a solid year at high Class A High Desert in 2014, when he hit .307 with 18 home runs and 18 stolen bases, Guerrero struggled at the Double-A level in 2015, hitting just .222/.258/.343 with seven homers in 126 games at Jackson and Mobile. He models his game after that of his uncle but lacks the same once-in-a-generation talent. Guerrero's approach and pitch recognition are subpar, but he continues to tantalize with his tools, including double-plus raw power and a double-plus arm strength. He has strong hands and a loose swing but doesn't make enough contact to get to that power, striking out 22 percent of the time in 2015. The ball sounds different coming off his bat when he does connect, however. Guerrero is an average runner and average defender in right field, where he recorded 15 assists in 2015 with a strong, accurate arm. Guerrero will need to repeat Double-A Mobile in 2016, when he must either improve his approach or hit for a lot more power.
If your last name is Guerrero, you have a high-pocketed, limber frame and you've even worn No. 27 at times, you're going to draw comparisons with Vladimir Guerrero, especially when you're his nephew. As one opposing manager explained it, Guerrero doesn't really have an approach. He swings hard each and every time, but he is doing a better job of recognizing which pitches to lay off. Now when he swings through a breaking ball, he just might send the next one over the fence, and he will punish any pitcher who misses with a fastball. Guerrero has plus-plus raw power thanks to an extremely loose swing and strong hands. He has a chance to eventually have above-average productive power, though his free-swinging ways and long swing will limit his hitting ability. His plus-plus arm in right field keeps runners honest, though he is sometimes a little too aggressive at trying to gun down any and all. Defensively, Guerrero is still a little erratic (six errors), but he has above-average range thanks to long strides. He's a tick above-average runner underway who turns in average times out of the batter's box. Guerrero's numbers will likely take a step back as he jumps to Double-A Jackson, but he's a high-ceiling, high-risk prospect and potential everyday right fielder.
The comparisons between Gabriel Guerrero and his uncle, nine-time all-star outfielder Vladimir, were inevitable from the moment Gabriel signed for $400,000 in 2011. While he isn't quite as toolsy at Uncle Vlad, he's pretty close. They both have very similar hitting styles, including not wearing batting gloves. Gabriel is a free-swinger who is adept at hitting pitches out of the zone, and yet he doesn't strike out copiously because he can handle breaking pitches fairly well. He has an outstanding arm, earning 70 grades on the 20-80 scouting scale, and that gives him a chance to be an above-average right fielder. He also runs well. The Mariners aggressively promoted Guerrero in 2013, assigning him to low Class A Clinton, and he survived even though his raw power didn't play. He puts on batting practice displays, but his lack of discipline keeps him from getting to his power in games. A probable assignment to high Class A High Desert is in store for 2014.
The Mariners signed Vladimir Guerrero's nephew as a 17-year-old for $400,000, in part because his build and hitting mechanics draw comparisons to his uncle. Gabriel is a free swinger who has the bat control and hand-eye coordination to hit just about any pitch near the plate. He shows good pitch recognition for his age and has budding strength that will improve as he continues to add muscle to his thin, projectable frame. He has explosive bat speed and strength in his wrists. Guerrero led the Rookie-level Dominican Summer League with 11 homers before being promoted to the Rookie-level Arizona League to finish the season. He has a slight uppercut at the plate and shows power to all fields, but the Mariners are working to shorten his swing a bit. His bat is ahead of his glove, as Guerrero is still raw defensively and needs to improve his routes and angles in right field. He's a below-average runner with a strong arm, and he lacks accuracy on his throws. There's no need to rush Guerrero, so he could start 2013 in extended spring training and report to Everett in June. His bat is advanced enough that an aggressive assignment to Clinton isn't out of the question.
Minor League Top Prospects
If there's one consensus about Guerrero, it's that he's a virtual clone of his uncle, former all-star Vladimir Guerrero, both in terms of body type and playing style. That comparison begins with his approach--or lack thereof--at the plate. Like his uncle, Guerrero will swing at any pitch at any time, and he'll look silly on occasion. But he can hit just about anything with outstanding hand-eye coordination, and he shows a knack for barreling balls that allows him to get to his considerable power. "When he makes contact, it's one of the most special ways the ball carries in the league," Lancaster manager Rodney Linares said. "He's hit some mammoth home runs against us, and even when he hits the ball on the ground, he almost killed my shortstop a couple times." Guerrero uses a big stride and his swing has length, but he does show signs of putting his tools together. He's a good defensive right fielder who runs well for his size, and he shares his uncle's big-time throwing arm.
Vladimir Guerrero's nephew led the Dominican Summer League with 11 homers before reporting to Arizona to finish the season. It didn't take long for Gabriel to start drawing raves from AZL observers, and he came on strong with four homers in the last five games. Like his uncle, Guerrero is a free swinger who can hit just about any pitch near the plate, but he's selective enough that he handles offspeed pitches and doesn't strike out much. He has plus bat speed and strong hands, and he should be able to add more strength to his projectable frame. He has a slight uppercut swing with power to all fields and the Mariners worked with him to get better extension at the plate. Guerrero is still very raw defensively and must improve his routes and angles in right field. His arm is strong but not very accurate. He also offers some intangibles, with Mariners hitting coach Andy Bottin believing Guerrero could be a silent leader in the clubhouse.
Best Tools List
- Rated Best Outfield Arm in the Seattle Mariners in 2014
- Rated Best Athlete in the Seattle Mariners in 2014