BA Newsletter: Subscribe Today!
Use the options to filter your search.
Track Record: Coming out of Buford (Ga.) High in 2015, Bart ranked No. 183 on the BA 500 but fell to the Rays in the 27th round in large part due to his strong commitment to Georgia Tech. In Atlanta, Bart was following in the footsteps of former major league backstops Jason Varitek and Matt Wieters, who also attended Georgia Tech. A career .321/.407/.544 hitter for the Yellow Jackets, Bart led the Atlantic Coast Conference in hitting (.359) as a junior in 2018, when he was named ACC player of the year, ACC defensive player of the year and was selected as a first-team All-American. Bart became the highest MLB draft pick in Georgia Tech history when the Giants selected him with the No. 2 overall pick and subsequently signed him for $7.025 million--the largest signing bonus for a position player in draft history. Scouting Report: Bart is the Giants' clear No. 1 prospect, and he has the chance to impact the game in a myriad of ways. At the plate, Bart projects for plus, all-fields power. Scouts were impressed with Bart's ability to tap into his raw power without completely selling out in games, and he hit 13 home runs and 14 doubles in just 45 games in the short-season Northwest League. With Bart's track record of hitting in the ACC, and then his successful, albeit brief, pro debut, evaluators feel confident grading his hit tool as at least above-average, with the potential to become a plus hitter. Defensively, Bart has a plus arm, and it grades out even better for its accuracy than it does pure arm strength, of which there is plenty. He routinely records sub 2.0-second pop times, and the Georgia native was lauded by scouts throughout his collegiate career for calling his own games behind the plate. Bart has just fringe-average speed, but he showed the athleticism and lateral quickness needed to be considered an above-average receiver with the ability to routinely block tough pitches in the dirt. The Future: Bart will likely start his first full season of pro ball in high Class A San Jose. Bart will forever be compared to Buster Posey, the catcher the Giants drafted the last time the organization had a top-five pick. Even if the Giants decide to move Bart along slower than Posey, it wouldn't be a surprise to see Bart in San Francisco by the end of the 2020 season. If all goes well in San Jose at the beginning of 2019, Bart could be promoted to Double-A Richmond by midseason.
Track Record: Luciano was ranked as the No. 2 international prospect in the 2018 class, trailing only the Marlins' current No. 1 prospect Victor Victor Mesa. Luciano signed for $2.6 million, which was the Giants' largest international signing bonus since spending $6 million to sign Lucius Fox in 2015. Scouting Report: A plus athlete with tremendous offensive upside, Luciano will begin his pro career as a shortstop, although there are some who believe he will eventually outgrow the position. If that's the case, Luciano has the hands to play third base, but also the athleticism to play either center or right field. For now, the 17-year-old is a plus runner with an above-average arm who will get every chance to stick at shortstop. Luciano has strong hands and quick bat speed, leading scouts to project plus power to all fields as a potential above-average hitter. There were some swing-and-miss concerns with Luciano early in the scouting process, but he has a strong sense for the strike zone and a compact swing. The Future: Luciano will likely stay back in extended spring training before making his stateside debut in the Rookie-level Arizona League later in 2019. There is a chance he could play in the Dominican Summer League, but the preference, as of now, seems to be having Luciano go ahead and get accumulated in the U.S. as an advanced 17-year-old international prospect.
Track Record: The younger brother of Henry Ramos, a Dodgers minor leaguer who played with Triple-A Oklahoma City in 2018, and Hector Ramos, a forward on the Puerto Rican national soccer team, Heliot is another exceptional athlete in the Ramos family. The No. 19 pick in 2017, Ramos signed with the Giants for just north of $3.1 million. Scouting Report: Exclusively a center fielder in his pro career, there are some who feel Ramos will be best suited for right field in the future as he continues to fill out his 6-foot-2 frame. Regardless, the Giants have been pleased with what they've seen from Ramos as an at least average center fielder and feel he'll be an above-average right fielder, at worst, in AT&T Park, which plays big in right field. Ramos is helped by his current plus speed, although his thick lower half leads many to believe he'll slow down as he matures, and his above-average arm plays at either position. Ramos' power profiles in right field as well, with the potential to become a middle-of-the-order bat with 25-plus home run potential. Ramos' hit tool is the biggest question. He has a short swing and can drive the ball to all fields, but he'll likely never draw many walks and he struck out more than 25 percent of the time in low Class A. He's naturally an aggressive hitter, and he usually makes loud contact when he connects. The Future: Ramos has the chance to be a dangerous power-speed threat in the middle of the Giants' lineup if he continues to refine all of his exciting tools. He'll advance to high Class A San Jose in 2019.
Track Record: A third-round pick out of Florida by the Red Sox in 2016, Anderson was acquired by the Giants, alongside fellow righthander Gregory Santos, in the July 2017 trade that sent third baseman Eduardo Nunez to Boston. An extremely effective reliever at Florida, Anderson has been almost exclusively a starter with both the Red Sox and Giants, and he has the frame, pitch mix and durability to stick as a starter in the majors. Scouting Report: Anderson has four average-or-better pitches with above-average control that helps all of his offerings play up. He attacks hitters with a 92-94 mph fastball that can touch 96 mph, and his best offspeed pitch is an upper-80s slider. Anderson also uses an average changeup and curveball that are effective because of his ability to throw strikes with all four of his pitches in nearly any count. Evaluators praise Anderson for his ability to maneuver through a lineup multiple times, regularly keeping hitters guessing and off-balance with a strong baseball acumen. The Future: Anderson is knocking on the door of the majors. He spent the final three months of 2018 in Triple-A Sacramento with middling success, but he could be promoted to San Francisco by mid-2019. He projects best as a No. 3 or No. 4 starter.
Track Record: Line one with Hjelle is his immense height, standing at a legitimate 6-foot-11. As a freshman at Kentucky, Hjelle served as the team's closer before transitioning to the Friday starter's role fo his sophomore and junior seasons. Hjelle was the Southeastern Conference pitcher of the year in 2017, and he was drafted by the Giants in the second round in 2018. He signed for $1.5 million. Scouting Report: Hjelle is similar to fellow Giants prospect Shaun Anderson in that he finds success with multiple average-or-better pitches, despite not having a true out pitch. Hjelle has a tick more life on his fastball than Anderson, regularly working in the 92-95 mph range with arm-side run. Hjelle's low-80s curveball has effective 12-to-6 shape that can elicit swings and misses, and his changeup could be an above-average pitch. The lanky righthander obviously has plenty of room to add weight to his 6-foot-11 frame, which could help squeeze out even more fastball velocity. All of Hjelle's pitches play up because of his above-average control, and his track record suggests he's a durable starter who has had major success at every level he's pitched. The Future: Hjelle will likely begin 2019 in the starting rotation for high Class A San Jose, which should be the most prospect-heavy team in the Giants' system. Assuming good health, Hjelle's ceiling is that of a No. 3 starter, and his floor should not fall below a solid No. 5 starter.
Track Record: A high school quarterback in Rocklin, Calif., Webb burst onto the baseball scouting scene during his senior year before the Giants drafted him in the fourth round in 2014. Webb agreed to an over-slot, $600,000 bonus, signing him away from his commitment to Cal Poly. After making it to low Class A in 2016, Webb blew out his elbow early in the season and needed Tommy John surgery. He returned in June 2017 and completed a career-high 104 innings in 2018, advancing as high as Double-A Richmond. Scouting Report: Webb has two plus pitches, headlined by a mid- to upper-90s fastball that routinely touches 98 mph. His fastball is described as being heavy, while his low-80s breaking ball has wipeout, swing-and-miss potential with a slurvy shape. The righthander is still working on a third-pitch changeup, but it's well behind his fastball and breaking ball. It often comes across too firm, not creating enough separation from his heater. Webb's control is still raw ever since returning from his surgery and shouldn't currently be considered better than average. He walked roughly four batters per nine innings in 2018, although the Giants were focused on limiting his innings, so he was likely airing it out in short stints more than he will in the future. The Future: Webb will return to Double-A, where he'll headline Richmond's rotation in 2019. He has more upside than fellow righthanders Shaun Anderson or Sean Hjelle, but he also has significant reliever risk until he further refines his changeup and control.
Track Record: Santos originally signed with the Red Sox for $275,000 in 2015. He was acquired by the Giants in July 2017, when the Red Sox traded Santos and righthander Shaun Anderson in exchange for third baseman Eduardo Nunez. After pitching in the Dominican Summer League in 2016 and 2017, Santos spent 2018 in the short-season Northwest League, where he made 12 starts. Santos missed time late in 2018 after he was struck in the head by a 105 mph line drive off the bat of Blue Jays' prospect Griffin Conine. He was taken off the field in an ambulance, but returned to the mound just 18 days later and made two additional starts before the season ended. Scouting Report: Still only 19 years old, Santos may have the highest upside of any pitcher currently in the system. Regarded as a big, strong, athlete, Santos has a heavy, mid-90s fastball that he keeps down in the zone with good angle, regularly touching 98 mph. Despite his youth, Santos does an excellent job of holding his velocity, and his fastball is complemented by a plus, upper-80s slider with good tilt. Santos still needs to develop his changeup. It's a below-average pitch right now that only flashes average. He has solid mechanics, does a good job of keeping himself in-line when going toward the plate, and as a result has average control. The Future: Santos should be ready for his first taste of full-season ball at low Class A Augusta in 2019. Although he has the upside of a No. 2 starter, there is also some reliever risk with Santos, who likely remains at least three years away from the majors.
Track Record: The Giants signed Canario for just $60,000 in 2016, which may turn out to be one of the franchise's better investments in recent memory. After spending 2017 in the Dominican Summer League, Canario made his stateside debut in the Rookie-level Arizona League in 2018. He got off to a slow start in the AZL, but caught fire in July, when he posted a 1.030 OPS and hit four of his six home runs. Scouting Report: Helped by his above-average speed and arm strength, Canario has the chance to be an above-average defender in center field. There are some who project him to move to right field, where his arm and power would profile well, but the Giants have liked what they've seen from Canario in center field. He has above-average or even plus range, although he is still raw when it comes to route running and defensive instincts. The 18-year-old Canario has above-average raw power and should grow into more. After showing an advanced feel for the strike zone in the DSL, Canario's strikeout rate jumped from 14.6 percent in 2017 to nearly 25 percent in the AZL. His swing gets long when he tries to sell out for more power, but overall he has an advanced approach at the plate and increased his walk rate to 13 percent in 2018. The Future: The next step for Canario is the short-season Northwest League. He'll need to improve his consistency, but the Giants are confident he has the raw tools necessary to be an impact center fielder with above-average power and speed if he can iron out his current kinks.
Track Record: Just a few months too young to be a member of the 2016 international free agent class, Toribio had to wait until July 2017 to sign with the Giants for $300,000. Toribio was one of several $300,000 signings the Giants made in 2017, although early indications are Toribio's bonus may be money well spent. The 6-foot-1 lefthanded hitter spent last season in the Dominican Summer League, where he led his team in hits (58), doubles (13), home runs (10) and total bases (103). Scouting Report: Toribio is an offense-first third baseman who draws comparisons to current Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers. He's an above-average hitter with an approach at the plate that is mature well beyond his years. Toribio's walk rate was nearly 19 percent in the DSL, and while sometimes that can be an indictment of the pitching in the minors' lowest level, evaluators said Toribio's feel for the strike zone is truly advanced. He has good loft in his swing with plus raw power that he taps into regularly, as evidenced by his .209 isolated slugging percentage in 2018. The struggle for Toribio will come defensively, as he's a below-average runner with fringe-average range at third base. His arm is average and plays well at third base, but he committed a team-worst 19 errors in the DSL and needs continued work at the position. The Future: Toribio should keep climbing the ladder with a stop in the Rookie-level Arizona League in 2019. Improving his third base defense will be the biggest key for Toribio to reach his potential, as he has middle-of-the-order offensive skills.
Track Record: Wong significantly raised his stock over the past two seasons, serving as Grand Canyon's ace and pitching well in the Cape Cod League before the Giants drafted him in the third round in 2018. After signing for $850,000, the 6-foot-2 righthander made his pro debut in the short-season Northwest League, where he impressed in 11 starts. Scouting Report: Wong features a heavy fastball that touches 97 mph, but more regularly sits 92-96 mph. Scouts commented that Wong's fastball has above-average life, helping the pitch play up. His curveball is at least above-average with solid 11-to-5 shape, while his changeup earns future 50s from scouts. Evaluators were impressed with Wong's ability to attack hitters, and he showed above-average control while averaging one strikeout per inning. The Future: The highest drafted player out of Grand Canyon in 25 years, Wong will move to full-season ball in 2019. Even if he starts the season at low Class A Augusta, a promotion to high Class A is possible. Wong has the ceiling of a mid-rotation starter.
Track Record: A first-rounder out of Boston College in 2015, Shaw signed with the Giants for $1.4 million in large part due to his plus lefthanded power. After hitting 81 home runs in 404 minor league games, Shaw made his major league debut on Aug. 31. Scouting Report: Shaw has plus, all-fields power and has the potential to hit 25-plus home runs in a full major league season. However, Shaw struggled with swing-and-miss issues in Triple-A, and those problems were exacerbated in a very brief appearance in the big leagues. Shaw's strikeout rate was above 34 percent in Triple-A and jumped to 37.1 percent in the majors, a direct byproduct of being too aggressive and chasing too many pitches. Shaw's bat will have to carry him, however, as he's an fringe-average defensive left fielder, at best, with limited range and an average arm. The Future: Shaw will compete for an Opening Day roster spot with the Giants in 2019, although he'll have to prove he can hit and make contract more regularly to carve out an everyday role. Starting in Triple-A isn't out of the question, although his plus power could make him a valuable platoon option.
Track Record: Considered a late-bloomer, Adon signed with the Giants as a 20-year-old out of the Dominican Republic in 2015. Adon was used as a starter in his first four years in the Giants' system, but exclusively came out of the bullpen in a successful stint in the 2018 Arizona Fall League. The Giants liked what they saw, added him to the 40-man roster this offseason and his future now resides in the bullpen. Scouting Report: Adon has a plus fastball that touched 102 mph in the AFL. His fastball is straight and doesn't feature a ton of life, but there's no denying its premium velocity is among the best in the game. His second pitch is an above-average power slider that flashes plus and works well off his fastball. Below-average control is a concern for Adon, who walked nearly four batters per nine innings in 2018. His control out of the bullpen in the AFL was better, however, as he walked just three batters in 21 innings. The Future: Although high Class A San Jose is the highest level Adon has pitched at in the minors, he should move quickly now that he is expected to be a full-time reliever. Adon could see time in the back of the Giants' bullpen in 2019.
Track Record: A $175,000 signing out of the Dominican Republic by the Mariners in 2014, De Paula has been traded twice in his career. He was acquired by the Giants in the August 2018 deal that sent Andrew McCutchen to the Yankees. After spending the majority of the last two seasons in the short-season New-York Penn League, the 21-year-old De Paula made only one start in the Giants organization in 2018, striking out nine and walking one in five innings with low Class A Augusta before the season ended. Scouting Report: A skinny, 6-foot-3 righthander with plenty of room to add weight to his frame, De Paula has a plus fastball that sits in the mid-90s and touches 98 mph with above-average life. He has feel for both a changeup and curveball, although both pitches are currently below-average offerings with the chance to become average or above-average pitches in the future. De Paula's secondary pitches and overall control lack consistency at the moment, but that's widely to be expected from a 21-year-old with only one, late-season start in full-season ball. The Future: De Paula has the three-pitch mix of a mid-rotation starter. He's raw and needs to improve his fringe-average control, but he'll receive much-needed experience at low Class A Augusta in 2019.
Track Record: Pomares joined shortstop Marco Luciano as the Giants' top international signings in 2018. The 17-year-old outfielder out of Cuba was ranked as the No. 11 international prospect and signed for just under $1 million. Pomares played in Cuba's 15U national league in 2015, when he ranked sixth in the league in batting average by hitting .383/.447/.533 with 16 walks and just six strikeouts. Scouting Report: Pomares has a fluid, compact stroke resulting in a high contact rate from the left side. He has a mature approach at the plate for only being 18 years old, and he has above-average raw power for his age. Pomares is an above-average runner and has the chance to stick in center field, although that could change depending on how he physically matures. He played mostly left field while in Cuba in 2015, but he has an average arm that should play at all three outfield positions. The Future: Pomares will likely start his Giants career in the Dominican Summer League.
Track Record: Quinn was one of the top power hitters coming out of college in 2016. The Giants drafted him out of Samford with their third-round pick, signing the righthanded hitter for $625,900. Quinn skipped low Class A and went straight to high Class A San Jose in his first full year, but he struggled with injuries was forced to repeat the level in 2018. He performed much better in his second go-round. Scouting Report: Quinn is a typical, run-producing corner outfielder, projecting best as a plus left fielder with an above-average arm in San Francisco's expansive AT&T Park. Quinn has above-average power, but he's most likely an average hitter with a propensity for strikeouts. The strikeouts are mostly a result of a swing that can get long, as he shows good command of the strike zone with a career walk rate near 10 percent. Quinn is an average runner, but he should never be much of a stolen base threat. The Future: After skipping low Class A but spending two years at high Class A, Quinn is right on track. He'll begin 2019 at Double-A Richmond.
Track Record: The Giants' second-round pick in 2014 out of Florida International, Garcia made his major league debut on Aug. 31. He performed well with the Giants in a brief look, although he had subpar numbers in his first full year at Triple-A before receiving his first big league callup. Scouting Report: Considered an average to above-average defensive catcher with a plus arm behind the plate, Garcia's future role in the majors rests heavily on his bat. He has plus raw power that should play above-average in games in the major leagues, but his hit tool has never been considered better than average. Garcia struck out nearly 30 percent of the time in Triple-A in 2018, and that rate jumped to nearly 50 percent in limited major league at-bats. Garcia has never shown much patience at the plate, and he has a rather lengthy swing. The Future: Between Buster Posey and Joey Bart, Garcia seems destined for a long-term backup role in San Francisco. With the weakness at the catcher's position across baseball, however, Garcia could be one of the best 30 big league catchers as soon as 2019, especially if his hit tool takes any slight step forward.
Track Record: Black has dealt with a bevy of injuries throughout his career, dating back to his high school days and impacting his throwing shoulder, pitching elbow, knees, back and more. The injuries have led Black to consider quitting baseball numerous times, but he had a career year in 2018 and finally made it to the big leagues more than seven years after being the Giants' seventh-round pick in 2011. Scouting Report: When healthy, Black has one of the best arms in baseball. He has a heavy, plus-plus fastball that sits 97-102 mph and a pair of above-average breaking balls in a mid-80s slider and low-80s curveball. Black has fringe-average control and is a reliever all the way because of durability issues, but his offspeed pitches play up because hitters focus so heavily on his premium velocity. Because of injuries, Black hadn't completed more than 35.1 innings in a season since high school. The 28-year-old was much healthier in 2018 and made 62 appearances between Double-A, Triple-A and the majors. The Future: Black has the ceiling of an elite setup man or closer in the majors, if he can stay healthy. That's a big if for Black, who needs to continue working on controlling his explosive arsenal in order to get the most out of his premium three-pitch mix.
Track Record: An international signing in July 2015, Marte made his full-season debut in low Class A Augusta and completed a career-high 118.2 innings. The 22-year-old is still raw with room to fill out his 6-foot-3, 180-pound frame, but he joins fellow righthanders Melvin Adon and Camilo Doval as Giants class of 2015 international signings who have a chance to make an impact in San Francisco. Scouting Report: Marte throws a heavy fastball, although it remains inconsistent in terms of velocity. He can throw anywhere from 90-98 mph with his heater, averaging 94-95 mph, but it consistently plays as a plus pitch when he keeps it down in the zone. Marte's offspeed is still a work in progress, as both his slider and changeup are current below-average pitches with the chance to be average offerings in the future. Marte improved his control in 2018, but it still currently grades out as average, at best. The Future: Marte is rather raw with his approach on the mound, and there are questions as to whether he'll remain as a starter. For now, he'll head to high Class A San Jose as a starting pitcher, but both his offspeed pitches and control need to improve if he wants to stay in the rotation.
Track Record: An international signing by the Giants in 2015, Doval made his stateside debut in 2017 in the Rookie-level Arizona League, where he posted the league's second-best strikeout rate (14.2 strikeouts per nine). In Doval's full-season debut in 2018, he allowed seven earned runs in his first 0.2 innings, but then settled down and allowed only 11 earned runs over his final 52.1 innings (1.89 ERA). Scouting Report: Doval is a pure reliever, but his fastball sits 93-99 mph, usually averaging 95 mph with movement. He's able to cut and sink his fastball, although sometimes that's happenstance because of his explosive and rather violent delivery. Doval's hard slider has a chance to be a plus pitch in the future, and it's especially lethal against righthanders, who hit just .137 off of him in 2018. Doval lacks a third pitch, which helped lefties hit .280 against him in low Class A. Doval struck out more than 13.2 batters per nine innings in 2018, but his current below-average control led to him walk 4.58 hitters per nine. The Future: Doval will jump to high Class A San Jose in 2019, armed with two plus pitches.
Track Record: Corry had one of the best fastball-curveball combinations of any high school pitcher in the 2017 draft, but fell to the third round because of control issues. So far, Corry has lived up to his pre-draft expectations, showcasing two above-average pitches while walking nearly six batters per nine innings. Scouting Report: Corry has an above-average fastball from the left side, sitting 90-94 mph with life. His curveball is also an above-average pitch, with 12-to-6 break and the chance to be a plus pitch. Corry's third-pitch changeup is wildly inconsistent, drawing below-average to above-average grades from scouts depending on the day. A lot of Corry's inconsistency, including the issues with his current below-average control, stem from an effortful delivery that has a lot of moving parts and a violent finish. The Future: Corry has the potential of a mid-rotation starter if he can find consistency with his changeup and improve his control. The Giants will send Corry to low Class A August as a starter in 2019, but he could always transition into an effective two-pitch lefthander out of the bullpen.
Track Record: A hard-throwing righthander out of Oklahoma State, Williams was the Giants' seventh-round pick in 2016. Following a breakout first full season in 2017, Williams struggled mightily in 2018. After cracking a nail on his throwing hand late in spring training, Williams never fully recovered and walked nearly seven batters per nine innings while recording a 6.06 ERA in the Double-A Eastern League. Scouting Report: Pitching from a low, three-quarter arm slot, Williams' 90-94 mph fastball jumps on hitters as it nears the plate. He struggled with fastball command in 2018, which put him behind in the count often. His hard, low-80s power curveball is his best offspeed pitch, grading out above-average, but his third-pitch changeup is currently below-average. The key for Williams will be finding the strike zone. His control has long been below-average dating back to his days at Oklahoma State, and after improving in that area in 2017, Williams took a step back this past season. The Future: Williams will be a starter at Double-A Richmond in 2019, but he has serious reliever risk. He'll need to throw more strikes and refine his changeup to reach his ceiling of a mid-rotation starter.
Track Record: After showing tantalizing stuff as a three-year starter at Southern Illinois, Coonrod was the Giants' fifth-round pick in 2014. He pitched well until reaching Double-A in 2017, when he struggled and then needed Tommy John surgery late in the season. Coonrod returned less than 12 months later, making 10 combined appearances in the Arizona League and high Class A California League in 2018. Scouting Report: After working as a starter throughout college and the first four years of his pro career, the Giants decided to move Coonrod to the bullpen post-Tommy John. Described as having a reliever's mentality, Coonrod attacks hitters with an above-average, low- to mid-90s fastball and an above-average, mid- to upper-80s slider. With only average control and a high-effort delivery, Coonrod's two-pitch mix works best in shorter stints, and he's proven equally adept at getting both right and lefthanders out. The Future: Coonrod has been added to the Giants' 40-man roster, but he'll likely begin 2019 in the bullpen for Triple-A Sacramento. Coonrod has the ceiling of a setup man, but the much more likely scenario is a middle-relief, seventh inning-type role.
Track Record: Avelino signed with the Yankees for $300,000 in 2011, but the long-time New York prospect was traded to the Giants alongside righthander Juan De Paula in the August 2018 deal that sent Andrew McCutchen to the Yankees. Avelino made his major league debut shortly after, appearing in six September games for the Giants. Scouting Report: Avelino is an average defensive shortstop with above-average arm strength and average range. He's long been considered a future utility infielder in the major leagues because of his below-average power and fringe-average hit tool, but he did show improved power with 15 home runs in 2018. Avelino is an above-average runner and could be an above-average defender at second base, but he's a career .270 hitter who lacks the typical power production teams are seeking from everyday regulars The Future: Likely to begin the season with Triple-A Sacramento, Avelino will enter spring training with the chance to make the Giants' roster as a backup infielder in 2019.
Track Record: A starting college shortstop in the Southeastern Conference, Howard was drafted in the 31st round as a draft-eligible sophomore in 2015 but chose to return to Missouri for his junior season. One year later, he raised his stock enough for the Giants to draft him with a fifth-round pick. Scouting Report: Much like fellow Giants' infielder Abiatal Avelino, Howard is capable defender whose below-average power likely pushes him into a utility role in the future. Howard is an average hitter--he's improved his walk rate and decreased his strikeout rate over the past two seasons--but unlike Avelino, Howard isn't capable of playing an everyday shortstop in the majors. A below-average runner with limited range, Howard is an above-average second or third baseman with an average arm. The Future: Howard is slated for Triple-A Sacramento in 2019. He's behind Avelino in the race to be the Giants' next utility infielder, but most evaluators believe Howard will be in the big leagues soon.
Track Record: The Giants' 14th-round pick in 2016, Menez had a career-best year in 2018. The majority of his work came for Double-A Richmond, where he struck out 92 batters in 74 innings. Scouting Report: Menez throws from a low, three-quarter arm slot with an above-average fastball that sits 90-95 mph. He gets excellent extension from the mound, allowing his fastball to get on hitters faster than the radar readings may suggest. Menez has a true four-pitch mix with a curveball, slider and changeup, although none consistently grades out better than average. His slider can flash plus at times with good tilt. Menez showed below-average control in 2018, walking more than four batters per nine innings. The Future: Although the Giants have stuck with Menez as a starter, he may be best suited for a relief role in the future. He's scheduled for Triple-A Sacramento in 2019.
Track Record: A $500,000 signing out of the Dominican Republic in 2014, Fabian, 20, was one of the youngest players in the high Class A California League in 2018. The Giants have aggressively pushed Fabian ever since he joined the organization, but this past season the athletic outfielder struggled mightily. Scouting Report: Fabian projects best as a plus defensive right fielder with a plus, accurate arm. His power has improved over the last couple of seasons, and he hit 10 home runs despite being mostly overmatched in the California League. His power should settle in as average in the future. The biggest concern with Fabian this season was his overly aggressive approach that resulted in a career-worst 24 percent strikeout rate. Fabian has shown below-average plate discipline in the past and has never drawn many walks, and those weaknesses were exposed when he was challenged in high Class A. With a more mature approach, Fabian could be an average hitter with time. He's an average runner who has never stolen more than five bases in a season. The Future: Fabian will return to the California League in 2019. He'll need to make more contact to reach his ceiling of a plus defensive right fielder with a hit-over-power profile.
Track Record: The son of five-time All-Star Luis Gonzalez, Jacob was well-known in the baseball community before the Giants drafted him with the 58th overall pick in 2017. After a strong pro debut in the Arizona League in 2017, Gonzalez skipped short-season ball and spent his first full season with low Class A Augusta. The jump proved challenging, as he struggled to get on base and tap into his plus raw power. Scouting Report: Gonzalez was playing OK for Augusta during the first half of the season before posting an OPS just barely over .450 in August and September. The 6-foot-3 righthanded hitter struggled to get the ball in the air and as a result hit into way too many groundouts. Gonzalez is just an average third baseman with limited range. He has above-average arm strength, but the accuracy isn't consistent, so the Giants are banking on his bat improving. Gonzalez has plus raw power and is a bigger and more physical hitter than his father, who hit more than 350 career home runs in the majors. The Future: Gonzalez is yet another Giants prospect who should be slated for high Class A San Jose in 2019, joining the likes of Joey Bart, Heliot Ramos and others. That's no gurantee, however, as his late-season slump could push him back to low Class A Augusta, where he was largely overmatched.
Track Record: A standout, three-year performer at Vanderbilt, Beede was the Giants' first-round pick in 2014. He seemed poised to grab a spot in San Francisco's rotation in 2017, but disappointed in his first taste of Triple-A. Beede struggled through his first two major league starts in April, and his numbers worsened when he was sent back to Triple-A before moving to the bullpen for the last three months of 2018. Scouting Report: Beede is at a crossroads in his career, with questions as to whether he is a starter or reliever. Out of the bullpen, Beede shows flashes of plus stuff with a fastball up to 97 mph. His three offspeed offerings--a cutter, curveball and changeup--lack consistency and vary in grades depending on the appearance, but his hard breaking ball and late-fading changeup flash above-average potential most often. While his pitch mix suggests Beede could remain a starter, his below-average control hurts those chances. Beede, who has struggled with his control since his time at Vanderbilt, walked more than six batters per nine innings in 2018. He has a career 5.81 ERA in 190.2 combined innings at Triple-A and in the majors. The Future: The Giants don't seem fully committed to moving Beede to the bullpen quite yet, and he could get one last chance as a starter in Triple-A. If he remains ineffective early in 2019, Beede could make it back to San Francisco as a reliever. His stuff should play up in shorter stints, but he'll only be effective if he stays around the strike zone with more regularity than he has in the past.
Track Record: After his freshman season at Wallace State (Ala.) JC, Rivera was drafted by the Giants in the 32nd round in 2017. Instead of signing, he chose to return to Wallace State for his sophomore season, when he posted a 10-0, 1.75 record with 98 strikeouts in 67 innings. The Giants were so impressed they selected Rivera again, this time making him their fourth-round pick a year later. Rivera draws the unfair comparison to current major league closer Craig Kimbrel, who also returned to Wallace State for his sophomore season and went from a 33rd-rounder in 2007 to a third-round pick in 2008. Scouting Report: Rivera made eight starts in nine appearances in his pro debut, although there are split opinions over whether Rivera will be a starter or reliever in the future. Rivera has an above-average, 93-96 mph fastball and a power curveball that has the chance to be a plus, swing-and-miss pitch. His curveball remains inconsistent, however, and his control was below-average in his brief pro debut. Because of these flaws, it seems Rivera will eventually be best used in a high-leverage relief role, where his strikeout potential with two above-average or better pitches will excel. The Future: Rivera will begin 2019 in low Class A Augusta's starting rotation. Depending on his results, Rivera could eventually transition into a fast-rising, late-inning reliever.
Track Record: A third-round pick out of Sandy Springs, Ga., Miller was considered one of the best all-around high school shortstops in the 2015 draft. Miller has played mostly second base since joining the Giants' organization, however. He struggled during his first three years but was much improved while playing for high Class A San Jose in 2018. Scouting Report: After aggressively pushing Miller in his first two full seasons in the minors, the Giants allowed Miller to repeat high Class A in 2018, when he was still just 21 years old. The move paid off, as Miller got on-base at a higher clip and showed improved power with the ability to impact the baseball more often. Miller will never draw many walks, and he still chases too many pitches outside of the strike zone, but he has the potential to be an average hitter with fringe-average power. Defensively, Miller is an above-average second baseman with the ability to play shortstop in a backup role. He has a fringe-average arm, but he's a plus runner and shows solid range in the field with the ability to steal bases, as well. The Future: Lauded for his makeup and work ethic, Miller will be tested at Double-A Richmond in 2019. If he's able to produce like he did in 2018, then there's still hope he could be an everyday second baseman in the majors. If he struggles to hit the more advanced pitching, then Miller's future could come as backup or utility infielder.
In order to access this exclusive content you must have a Baseball America Account.
Login or sign up