Reds Begin Trying Noelvi Marte At Third Base
When the 2022 season began, Noelvi Marte was in the Mariners organization.
Once the trade deadline passed, he found himself in the Reds' system after being dealt as the centerpiece of the deal that sent righthander Luis Castillo to Seattle.
The then 20-year-old shortstop had hit well with High-A Everett before the trade, hitting .275/.363/.462 to go along with 34 extra-base hits in 85 games.
After joining the Reds, Marte was assigned to High-A Dayton and kept on hitting, posting a .293/.397/.443 line in 30 games.
Overall, Marte finished the year with 23 doubles, 19 home runs and had 23 stolen bases while hitting .279/.371/.458 in 115 games.
“He’s a really good athlete,” Reds vice president of player development Shawn Pender said. “He runs well, he’s got tremendous raw power, and we think he can play shortstop.”
When the regular season ended, Marte joined Team Spain for a World Baseball Classic qualifying event. Shortly after the tournament in Europe, he headed out to play in the Arizona Fall League.
It didn’t take too long before Marte showed off his raw power. He hit a 461-foot home run in his 12th game.
On the other side of the ball, things were a bit different. After Marte spent his entire career at shortstop, the Reds asked him to slide over to third base in the AFL.
“Knowing our depth at shortstop, finding a place for a great athlete who’s got offensive upside was important,” Pender said. “That’s why we wanted to try him at third.
“At the end of the day, if a guy can play short, you can always put him back there. But if he can play third as well, and he’s got experience there, it’s another way to get a great athlete and bat you know in the lineup as he progresses to the big leagues.”
— Elly De La Cruz got off to a hot start in the Dominican League, hitting .361/.429/.611 through the first 10 games for Licey. His first home run cleared the wall in center field at Licey's home park, which is 411 feet from home plate and twice as tall as the other outfield walls. De La Cruz became just the 12th player to clear the fence since the stadium opened in 1955.