BLUF: Very well-rounded player that can contribute across the board and has above-average potential.
The Player: Jean Segura (SS, Milwaukee Brewers) – Signed by the Angels out of the Dominican Republic in 2007. Hit .324/.392/.393 as a 17-year old in the DSL that first year, earning a promotion to the US in 2008. Missed most of the 2008 season with a broken ankle. Exploded in 2009, hitting .354/.395/.514, playing 36 games for rookie-level Orem and missed time with a broken finger. Played a full season with Low-A Cedar Rapids in 2010, tearing up the Midwest League with a .313/.365/.464 line backed by 24 doubles, 12 triples and ten home runs. Missed time in 2011 thanks to a torn hamstring, but hit .281/.337/.422 in 44 games for Inland Empire. Was hitting .294/.346/.404 for Double-A Arkansas at the time of his trade to the Brewers. Has hit an empty .280 since being called up to the big leagues by the Brewers.
Basis of Report: Compilation – Personal Observation (Midwest League 2010), Industry Contacts
Body (5-10 165): Small frame that’s a bit thick. Good strength and some fast-twitch athleticism. Body reminds me of Ramon Santiago.
Hit: Loads with hands back and away from body but consistently gets to the hitting zone quickly. Brilliantly fast bat with great hands and good feel for the barrel. Great contact ability and increased willingness to hit the ball where it’s pitched. Potential to hit .290-.300 consistently at MLB level. Works counts but is an aggressive swing that would rather hit than walk. Grade – 60/70
Power: Surprising pop for his size. Tremendous bat speed. Can juice ball to all fields and finds gaps with ease. Has potential for average home-run power at peak. Power is more a part of his game than you would expect. Potential for 30 doubles and 15 home runs. Grade (raw power) – 40/50
Arm: Good quality arm for right side of the infield. Stretched on left side. Doesn’t always have a ton of zip on throws. Lacks pure SS arm but can make it work with quick release. Grades range from below-average to average. Could improve slightly with more experience and focused work with Brewers staff. Grade – 40/50
Fielding: Has taken well to move to SS in 2011. Shows at least average range to both sides and good ability to track the ball in the air and over his head. Not a flashy defender but very sound. Excellent hands and rapidly improving instincts. Still working on the pivot from the other side, but can turn a nice double play. Should show a slightly above-average glove long term at SS and could be plus at 2B. Grade – 50/50
Speed: Turns in home-to-first times from average to plus, typically in the solid-average range. Thicker lower half doesn’t scream speed but he runs very well and has sustained this ability so far. Could steal 20 bases a year in the big leagues. Speed plays well in the field. Grade – 50/50
Summation: Potential for five average tools. Arm strength is the weakest tool but he compensates for it at SS and it plays just fine at 2B. Really nice hands in the field with ability to pick at either position up the middle. Will contribute defensively no matter where he plays. Excellent feel for hitting. Makes consistent hard contact and uses the entire field. Ball jumps off his bat thanks to outstanding bat speed. Potential .290+ hitters with 30 doubles and 15 home runs. Really nice offensive player. Doesn’t walk a ton but still works counts and gets in good situations to attack and drive the ball. Potential excellent number two hitter on a championship-caliber club.
Relative Risk: Low. Nearly big league ready and has skills to contribute every day on both sides of the ball.
Future: The Brewers wasted no time bringing Segura to the big leagues, and while he may be slightly overmatched right now, he could be ready to take over an everyday role with the club in 2013. Really nice player with some All-Star potential and he should be an above-average player with ease.