BLUF: Very solid everyday CF with all-around ability on offense and defense.
The Player: Leonys Martin (OF, Texas Rangers) – The Rangers inked Martin to a big league deal valued at $15.6 million last May after he defected from the Cuban National team in Taiwan. The 23-year old outfielder moved quickly to Double-A where he posted a .348/.435/.571 line in just 29 games before being promoted to Triple-A. With Triple-A Round Rock, his pace slowed to just .263/.316/.314 in 40 games but that didn’t stop him from getting a big league look along the way. Martin has bounced between Triple-A and the big leagues in 2012, posting an ugly .184/.262/.395 line with Texas, but a whopping .362/.429/.617 mark in 45 minor league games.
Basis of Report: Compilation – Industry Contacts
Body (6-2, 190): Good frame with good strength and athleticism. Has added too much muscle mass at times but looks thinner and more lively this year. Has some fast-twitch ability. Plus body.
Hit: Shows a good feel for the strike zone and solid pitch recognition skills. Can work counts and wait for pitches he can handle. Better served being aggressive early at times as he can get passive on occasion. Plus to plus-plus bat speed but a swing path that’s hyper-focused on contact. Works line to line very well and has ability to be an easy plus hitter with strong on-base abilities beyond his average. Everything is already there with little hitting projection remaining. Grade – 60/60
Power: Has ability to drive the ball with good strength and outstanding bat speed. Will flash HR power in batting practice, but rarely shows it off during games. Swing becomes contact oriented during games and he’s more of a gap-to-gap hitter. Can still develop in-game power with refinements to swing approach. Should accumulate 30+ doubles a year with 10-15 home runs as well. Grade (raw power) – 40/50
Arm: Best tool. Really strong and quite accurate. Easy plus-plus tool with quick release, tons of carry and exceptional velocity. Outstanding thrower. Grade – 70/70
Fielding: Strong overall OF. Shows ability to range from gap to gap. Plus instincts and feel for the position. Reads balls well off the bat and gets quick jumps. Combines jumps with regularly proper routes, giving him plenty of range. Above-average to plus overall defender, though it’s not as flashy as some of the better CF gloves. Still improving reads in larger stadiums with higher second decks. Grade – 50/60
Speed: Easy above-average runner in every aspect of his game and will consistently show plus times from home to first. Has athleticism and body type to maintain speed. Plays up because of impressive fielding and base running instincts. Overall plus. Grade – 60/60
Summation: Very good all-around player with few weaknesses and a broad range of tools and skills. Has natural hitting ability with a consistent swing and bat speed. Uses the whole field well. Can become too focused on contact at the expense of his strength and power. Potential to hit .280 with 30 doubles 10-15 home runs and 20 stolen bases. Quality up-the-middle defender with good range and a true plus-plus arm that is an in-game weapon. Nice blend of tools and skills with very good feel for the game. Potential to be an average to above-average CF that hits toward the top of the lineup.
Relative Risk: Moderate. Early MLB struggles raise an eyebrow, but without a glaring weakness there’s plenty of hope.
Future: He has very little to prove in the minor leagues and could be in line to take over in center field on an everyday basis in 2013. If the Rangers opt not to hand over the reins, he should be a very valuable trade piece.