This started out as a top five 2nd basemen in the Sally but I decided to break it up because Moncada alone was getting pretty long and I suspect Forrest Wall will too.
Moncada is Age 20, listed at 6’2″ 205 lbs, Bats both throws right.
Probably the highest profile prospect in A Ball history, Moncada is an impressive young man it’s easy to see why the scouts were raving and he received such a large bonus. The 1st thing you notice is he isn’t your typical 20 year old he’s built out, solid muscular frame. He’s listed at 6’2, 205, I’d guess he’s 6′ or 6’1″ and 215-220 but there isn’t an ounce of fat on him. I shook his hand at one point and he’s got very large hands which I found interesting and its a big reason why he’s able to generate so much bat speed. I watched him in the pregame warmup stretches several times and he’s always laughing it up with his teammates, that’s normally a good indicator that he’s well liked in the clubhouse.
Moncada got off to a slow start which was expected as he hadn’t played competitively in 18 months sine he left Cuba. His bat started to come alive around the all-star break (late June) which was about a six weeks after his arrival in Greenville. For the purpose of the scouting report I’m only going to be using data from July and August as he was shaking off a lot of rust in May and June.
At the plate Moncada is two different hitters right now, left handed he’s able to elevate the ball if he goes the other way or to center field but nearly everything to his pull side is a ground ball right now. He had a .133 ISO as a LHH and half of his batted balls were on the ground. Right Handed Moncada is a much better hitter right now, he’s sporting a .400 ISO during the last two months. He sprays line drives all over the yard and hit 5 of his 7 hr’s in 30% of the at bats.
Here’s a closer look at the batted ball rates, (courtesy of MLB Farm) (LHH) Groundball 50%, Flyball 30%, Line Drive 18% (RHH) Groundball 38%, Flyball 34%, Line Drive 27%
This is a small sample size but its all we have to work with right now and I believe these numbers have merit.
The ball jumps off of his bat and he’s got tremendous bat speed both left handed and right handed. It will be interesting to see if he’s able to add some lift to his left handed swing.
Here we get multiple looks at Moncada from both sides of the plate courtesy of David Lee (Augusta Chronicle and Baseball Prospectus).
He struck out 18% of the time as a LHH and 16% as a RHH, he walked 15% lefty and 10% righty. Moncada will work counts he’s not just up there hacking and he’s shown the ability to recognise spin.
He has plus plus speed he’s extremely fast and gets excellent jumps. Sal league catchers were overmatched, he stole 49 bases this season and was caught 3 times. An intelligent/ aggressive base runner will take an extra base.
I got six different looks at Moncada this year and I still don’t know if he’s a 2nd baseman, he’s got the tools to stay at the position, he’s shown plenty of range and arm but he’s fielding everything off to the side and he’s kicking a lot of routine plays as a result. Also his actions aren’t real smooth over there. My gut is telling me he’s a corner OF in three years although he does have the speed for center. Time will tell. The bat will play everywhere.
Moncada can do it all, he’s got the potential to be a superstar. With the bat speed he generates the potential is there for him to be 70 bat, 60-65 game power and 70 speed. Or .310, 23-28 HR, 40-50 SB. I would rank his current hit at 50 left handed and 60 right handed. with 65 raw power.
Exciting prospect it will be interesting to see how fast Boston pushes him. I’ll be back soon with a look at Forrest Wall.
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