SF Giants: Five Prospects make Fangraphs’ Top 100 List
By Jeff Young
Fangraphs released its top 100 prospects list on Wednesday and a handful of SF Giants prospects made the list.
Marco Luciano (No. 11), Joey Bart (No. 55), Heliot Ramos (No. 61), Luis Matos (No. 87), and Gregory Santos (No. 98) were the SF Giants representatives.
Five SF Giants prospects make Fangraphs top 100 prospect list
Luciano, Bart, and Ramos have generally appeared on every top prospect list with Luciano leading the way by a fair margin. With that being said, Bart saw a pretty substantial drop in Fangraphs’ ranking compared to MLB.Com (No. 23) and Baseball Prospectus (No. 29).
Of course, this is a product of his struggles that took place as a rookie in 2020. In 111 plate appearances, the catching prospect slashed .233/.288/.320 (69 OPS+) with five doubles, two triples, no home runs, and seven RBI while being worth just 0.3 WAR.
On top of this, Bart struggled to control the strike zone as he posted a 2.7 percent walk rate against a 36.9 percent strikeout rate. Furthermore, his batted ball profile created some cause for concern as he produced a ground ball in 51.6 percent of his batted ball events.
Behind the dish, Bart had trouble controlling the running game and his pitch framing was graded as average. However, dealing with a lack of success at the major-league level can become a valuable learning experience, and seeing how Bart responds to it will be a good barometer.
With Buster Posey returning and the signing of veteran backstop Curt Casali, Bart should see much-needed development time in Triple-A to begin the 2021 campaign.
Outside of Bart, Heliot Ramos could force his way onto the major-league roster by September with a strong showing in the minors. In a parallel universe, the outfield prospect may have already made his debut if the 2020 minor-league season had not been canceled.
Not far behind Ramos is Luis Matos. Matos reeled in a $725,000 signing bonus during the 2018-2019 J2 signing period and his stock has been on the rise ever since he debuted as a pro in 2019. Impressively, the 19-year-old prospect has appeared on a few prospect lists despite a very limited track record as a pro, which is not an easy task.
Lastly, Santos surprisingly made his way onto the back-end of the list. The SF Giants acquired the pitching prospect along with Shaun Anderson from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for Eduardo Nunez just before the 2018 trade deadline. In four seasons as a pro, Santos has registered a solid 3.20 ERA, but he has battled injuries as he has accumulated only 174.1 career innings.
The right-handed prospect has a fastball that sits comfortably in the mid-90’s with a lot of movement and an above-average slide. Staying healthy will be key to his development, but since he has been added to the 40-man roster, the Giants may become aggressive with his placement.
Many of the prospect lists have begun to reflect favorably on the Giants farm system. Luciano, Bart, and Ramos have led the way, but a handful of other prospects including Matos, Santos, Hunter Bishop, and Seth Corry have caught the attention of external evaluators as well. This is a positive sign for an organization going through a rebuild.