SF Giants hitting prospects rundown (4/5 - 4/17)
Flying Squirrels Hitting Prospects
Sean Roby: 7 G, 31 PA, .400 AVG, 1.636 OPS, 6 HR, 11 RBI, 6 BB, 10 K
Brett Auerbach: 7 G, 35 PA, .333 AVG, .962 OPS, 2 HR, 6 RBI, 5 BB, 8 K, 2 SB
Will Wilson: 7 G, 35 PA, .250 AVG, .793 OPS, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 7 BB, 9 K
Tyler Fitzgerald: 7 G, 31 PA, .111 AVG, .342 OPS, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 BB, 17 K, 1 SB
Do you know what's better than five home runs? How about six? That's exactly what Sean Roby did in the first week of the 2022 season. What made the feat more incredible is that he did not only hit more home runs than Villar but he also did it while playing two fewer games in an extreme pitcher-friendly ballpark! The Diamond is notorious for killing flyballs but Roby made it look like the Great American Ball Park with his power performance. Those six homers were not cheapies either. He hit one off the scoreboard which is a very rare feat to do and all of his six homers had more than 400 feet of estimated distance. Yes, the strikeouts are concerning as well, but if he can produce, people will look past that. The single-season record for home runs in a season for the Flying Squirrels was set last season by Villar with 20 and Roby is already more than a quarter through. There's a big shot that Roby will shatter that record and he's already back inside my top 30 prospect as a result.
It is a well-deserved Prospect of the Week for Roby, but our king Brett Auerbach is too shabby, either. He's basically doing Brett Auerbach things once again. He's played multiple positions in the field (two games behind the plate, three games at second base, one game at third base, two games at center field), and he's already doing a little bit of everything while keeping his peripherals in check. I was actually thinking of what kind of Auerbach should show up offensively because he showed that he can mainly hit for contact with San Jose and mainly hit for power with Eugene. We are seeing that he is meshing those two together in a beautiful way and it's wonderful. Let's all enjoy Brett Auerbach while he's still being severely underrated by the people who do not exclusively cover the Giants.
The final hitter who has a strong-looking first week is Will Wilson. As we all know, Wilson spectacularly face-planted when he got to Richmond and there are a lot of reasons for that but it is mainly simplified as not being able to make contact with the ball. Our very own Jeff Young interviewed him during Spring Training and Wilson talked about doing more baseball-related strength training to help translate his work off the field to actual in-game performance. So far, so good. He's still pretty aggressive in the batter's box but he's been taking walks better and he looks more athletic in the dirt defensively. Let's see if it can continue as the season rolls along.
On the unfortunate side of things, Tyler Fitzgerald is off to a horrendous start to his 2022 season with a 55% strikeout rate. Whenever I watch his plate appearances, he's plainly not seeing the ball well out of the pitcher's hand. Fitzgerald came into the 2022 season as one of the most reliable hitters in the Emeralds lineup last season but it's tough times for the middle infield prospect to begin his Flying Squirrels career. Good thing there's plenty of time to turn things around.