Thursday, December 23, 2010

Top 15 Hitters: #12 Hector Guevara

Hector Guevara
5'11" 170 lbs DOB: 10/7/1991
Second Baseman
Bats: Right | Throws: Right
2010: Princeton
Acquired: 2006, Venezuela

Guevara ranked 10th on this list a season ago, and after raking in the Venezuelan Summer League in 2009 seemed poised to break out in the states in 2010. The Rays rather aggressively started him out in Princeton, where he played the season as an 18-year-old.

His .251/.308/.363 line didn't quite live up to expectations, especially when compared to his .330/.374/.534 effort in the VSL. But there were some positives to be found. Like Cesar Perez, his low strikeout rate -- just 31 times in 64 games -- indicates he wasn't overmatched. He struggled against righties but crushed lefties, hitting .329/.390/.571 in 70 at bats against them. He was also a little more athletic than advertised, swiping 9 bases while being caught twice (though he's by no means a burner: he grounded into a lot of double plays). He switched from SS in Venezuela to 2B in the States, where his actions and footwork are at least average.

Don't let the smallish frame fool you, though, because Guevara's quite capable of hitting for power. He may not project as a huge home run hitter, but he makes hard contact consistently and should hit for a good number of extra-base hits. He's athletic enough to play up the middle at 2B, though he'll need to keep his body in good condition as a move to 3B would hurt his value. He'll probably never put more up than average walk numbers, but he off-sets that by not striking out often and has the contact skills to be a .300 or better hitter.

Depending on how aggressive they wish to be, Guevara could get a promotion past Hudson Valley and into full-season ball. If that's the case, I'd expect a bit of an adjustment period before he settles in and starts showing off his skills -- as he did in 2010 (he hit .295 in August and .342 in his final 10 games for Princeton).

6 comments:

  1. Good job once again. That is a good question. Does he go the BG or HV? My guess is HV, but that is only because the Rays are slow to promote guys quickly.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I can only think of one reasonable comp, Julio Cedeno. Young infielder who made the jump from the VSL to Princeton. He then jumped over HV to BG last season. But he was about a year older than Guevara, and BG needed a 3Bman. Remember, it's not only about the player's readiness, it's also a factor of where the Rays need players, and getting the guy playing time.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I still like him more than Brett. I think he offers more upside and power and he is about just as young. I think he starts at HV. I think he will have a very good year next year. Something like
    .280/.350/.400 or something around there.

    ReplyDelete
  4. JWalls,

    I just thought about the Rays 2b depth. In the low minors, the two guys are Guevara and Brett. I assume both are past GCL/Princeton, so one has to go to HV and the other to BG. I guess it depends on who the Rays think is better.

    ReplyDelete
  5. You think Brett skips Princeton just because of his performance in GCL? The Rays are not that agressive with batters, def. after seeing the HS draftees last year not do so well.I was thinking
    Brett-Pr
    Guevara-HV
    Price-BG
    Bortnick-Char

    Did any of you hear any reports on Brett'd D at second? I know Guevara was not the best there, but I know there were questions about Brett there too.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I think JWalls nailed it. From my projected lineups file, here are the 2B:

    Princeton - Ryan Brett
    Hudson Valley - Hector Guevara
    Bowling Green - Robbie Price
    Charlotte - Tyler Bortnick
    Montgomery - Cole Figueroa
    Durham - Cody Cipriano, Shawn O'Malley, or some free agent sign

    Cip and O'Malley could stay in Montgomery too.

    Princeton should have an interesting IF with Brett at 2B, Querecuto at SS and C. Perez at 3B.

    For the short-season teams remember that a draft pick could sign quickly and start. Especially at Hudson Valley, lot's of meh projected in the IF outside of Guevara.

    ReplyDelete