SF Giants top prospects: No. 1 — SS Marco Luciano
Highest Level: Low-A (Salem-Keizer)
Acquired: IFA (2018)
Future-Value Grade: 60
Marco Luciano has the highest ceiling of any prospect in baseball.
Scouts put 70-80 grades on his power potential, but that alone isn’t what gives him such a rarefied air in MLB circles. Luciano has a sweet right-handed swing and a legitimate chance to develop a plus hit-tool as well. Tie that in with the potential to play shortstop, and there are scenarios where Luciano becomes one of the best players in MLB.
In his first taste of professional ball in 2019, the Giants brought Luciano stateside for what was supposed to be a challenge in the Arizona Rookie League. In 47 games, Luciano bashed 10 home runs and a .322/.438/.616 line and forced a late-season promotion to Low-A.
He hit just .212/.316/.333 in nine games following the move up to Salem-Keizer before a hamstring injury cut his season short. Still, even in that small sample, he walked nearly as much as he struck out and appeared to have some unfavorable batted-ball luck.
He did all that at the age of 17.
Even without a minor-league season in 2020, Luciano’s star continued to shine brighter and brighter. The Giants assigned him to their team at the alternate site in Sacramento, where he consistently faced off against pitchers with upper-minors experience who were often more than a decade older than him. Many of them came away impressed. Then at instructs, he hit a home run with a 119-mph exit velocity that made waves throughout MLB.
Now, at big-league camp, Luciano has shown an even more advanced ability defensively that leaves me confident he’ll be a competent shortstop. That was really the lone remaining question in his path. I would not be shocked if the Giants surprise fans with an aggressive minor-league assignment where Luciano struggles to start 2021. He developed some bad habits swinging at bad pitches he could still drive against lower-level pitching that the organization will likely work hard to curb. Still, Luciano has shown an incredible work ethic, and fans have every reason to be excited about his future.
SF Giants prospects week is not done yet. If you have a question for Marc about his SF Giants top 31 prospects ranking, you can submit one here for his fan Q&A.