2059.5 Flight School-Charlotte Prospect Report-Third Base

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2059.5 Flight School-Charlotte Prospect Report-Third Base

Post by Krathan » Tue Apr 16, 2024 6:19 pm

In this edition of Flight School, we take a look at the top prospects in the Charlotte Flyers organization at the position of third base.

The top prospect on this list is 2056 first round pick Jacquot Natta. He has played mostly first base and third base since joining the organization. He has played a few games in the outfield and he has also pitched in 66 games, starting 65 of them. For now, we will focus on Natta the position player. Defensively, Natta has been most successful at first base but the team is still working to try to get him to become a more comfortable third baseman in the field. In fact, they will be sending him to their development lab for that purpose this off-season. In 2056, Natta hit well at the rookie level, slashing .277/.341/.604 with 19 home runs in 60 games. He spent the next season in Danville at the A level. He struggled a bit more there, slashing .234/.323/.414 after skipping over short A. He did finish that campaign with 27 doubles and 18 home runs. That brings us to 2058. Natta started the year in Danville again, but was promoted after just 13 games. He had an OPS of 1.110 in that stretch. He then spent the next 30 games at the AA level in New Bern. He hit only .234 with 5 home runs in those 30 contests but was again promoted to AAA when an injury created a need at AAA Richmond. Overall, Natta settled in nicely at the new level. He slashed .259/.332/.425 with 16 doubles and 12 home runs in 85 games for a wRC+ of 109. In his minor league career, Natta has now played in 314 games, slashing .255/.332/.459 with 56 doubles, 57 home runs, and 192 RBI. He has posted a wRC+ of 111 with 4.5 WAR. The organization is hoping that he can improve his third base defense, making him more versatile as they envision his future with the club. If that doesn’t work, first base will likely be his best fit defensively long term. The team plans to have him in Spring Training this year. There hasn’t been any indication of whether they think he could end up with the big league club this year but it seems likely that he will spend at least part of 2058 in Richmond.

The next prospect on the list is Marco Skinner A 6th round pick in 2055, Skinner has played at the Rookie, short A, A, and AA levels in his professional career. He has been in AA with New Bern for the last season and a half and has put up some pretty good numbers during that time In 217 games with New Bern, he has slashed .255/.325/.437 with 39 double, 37 home runs, and 121 RBI. He has posted 2.9 WAR and a wRC+ of 104 during that time. Defensively, he has some work to do. He has the tools to be able to play third base well but needs to further develop his footwork and understanding of the position. He was drafted as a second baseman but doesn’t turn the double play well. He has still seen quite a bit of time in the middle infield because of a lack of players for those positions in the organization. The team is hoping to get him more time at the hot corner this year to see if he can improve in that area.

The final prospect on the list is Sergio Botte. Honestly, Botte is only on this list because he had a great 2058 season that came out of nowhere. He is here because he could become a very interesting prospect if he can reproduce that type of season. He was drafted in 2054 and his Rookie league season with 0.04 WAR was his highest WAR mark until 2058. This year, Botte slashed .325/.379/.498 with 24 doubles and 22 home runs in 133 games. Botte had only hit 21 home runs in his first 410 minor league games. His 140 wRC+ was more than twice his 2057 mark of 67. Botte has a fantastic arm but his range is limited. He has only played 3B and DH in the Flyers minor league system. This season, he was mostly a DH. Perhaps that had something to do with his offensive jump as he didn’t have to focus on defense. Scouts seem to think this year is more of an anomaly than a sign of things to come. Botte will have a chance to prove them right or wrong this year when play starts in April.
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Re: 2059.5 Flight School-Charlotte Prospect Report-Third Base

Post by BaseClogger » Tue Apr 16, 2024 7:22 pm

Natta is tantalizingly close to having those hot corner tools. Will be great if he can do it. These tweeners can be frustrating because if they’re not gonna play third they might as well have a 3 arm and slightly better offensive ratings. Then again, most tweeners aren’t also legit pitching prospects.
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Re: 2059.5 Flight School-Charlotte Prospect Report-Third Base

Post by Krathan » Tue Apr 16, 2024 7:35 pm

I agree. I would be thrilled if Natta could learn to play 3B well. I’m also pleased with how much he has developed as a pitcher but I’ll talk about that in another article.
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Re: 2059.5 Flight School-Charlotte Prospect Report-Third Base

Post by RT60 » Tue Apr 16, 2024 7:57 pm

Eager to see how the dev lab works for Natta. Looks like good timing the lab showed up this year.

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Re: 2059.5 Flight School-Charlotte Prospect Report-Third Base

Post by Krathan » Tue Apr 16, 2024 8:17 pm

For sure. It makes me that much more excited to try it out.
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