#6 – OF Cesar Puello

Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Height/Weight: 6’2”, 195 lbs
Acquired: NDFA (7/2/07)
Born: 4/1/91 (La Romana, DR)
2011 Rank: #5

Why Ranked Here: Last year, Puello held the #5 spot in the ranking based on pure tools.  This year, he moves to #6 because he started to turn those tools into production.  He’s a physical specimen with big strong shoulders, and a power/speed game.  In 2011, he bopped 10 homers after hitting just one in 2010.  Ten home runs might not sound special, but it’s a whole lot better than you think because of Puello’s level and the Florida State League.  He was 21st overall, in the FSL in homers, and one of just two players who played the season as 20-year olds to hit double digit homers (the Tigers’ Avisail Garcia was the other).

 

In fact, those 10 home runs actually raise the floor on Puello very considerably. From 2000 to 2008, 18 players hit at least ten home runs, at the age of 20 or younger in the Florida State League.  All but two are big leaguers. That’s 89% of the guys. Some are stars.  Some are not.

 

Here is the full list of 20 year olds with 10 or more homers in the FSL in the last 11 years:

2010 – None
2009 – Austin Romine – 13; Neftali Soto – 11
2008 – Logan Morrison – 13; Wilson Ramos – 13
2007 – Jay Bruce – 13; Austin Jackson – 10; Cameron Maybin – 10
2006 – Blake DeWitt – 18; Mike Carp 17; David Winfree – 13
2005 – Matt Kemp – 27
2004 – Joel Guzman – 14 (age 19), Jeremy Hermida – 10
2003 – Franklin Gutierrez – 20; David Wright – 15; Willy Aybar – 11
2002 – Will Smith – 14; Guillermo Quiroz – 12
2001 – Cody Ross – 15
2000 – David Kelton – 18

(Non big leaugers italicized.)

At the plate, Puello must still become much more patient.  After walking in 7.1% of his plate appearances in 2010 with Savannah, his walk rate dropped to 3.7% in 2011 with St. Lucie.  His on-base percentage was supported by 20 hit-by-pitches.  That’s a repeatable skill – he was plunked 22 times in 2010.

 

After working in right field in 2008 through the first half of 2011, Puello moved to center for the second half of 2011. As he ages, and fills out, he’ll probably lose the speed for center, but if he can stay in center, his value jumps dramatically.  For reference, his range factor/game was 2.54 in 52 games whereas Matt den Dekker’s was 2.75 in 62 games in the same park. So, not quite as good, but in the same neighborhood.

 

2011: Just as he did in 2010, when he rebuilt his swing and load, Puello had a stronger second half than first half.

2011 By Half


AB H 2B 3B HR BB SO AVG OBP SLG BABIP ISO
11 Pre-ASB 251 60 11 2 4 10 52 .239 .296 .347 .284 .108
11 Post-ASB 190 54 10 2 6 8 51 .284 .336 .453 .350 .168

 

Dr. Pangloss Says: Star.

Debbie Downer Says: Gets a big league chance, but never learns an approach, and gets exploited by MLB pitchers.

Projected 2012 Start: AA Binghamton

MLB Arrival: 2014

 

Basic Stats


AB H 2B 3B HR BB SO TPA AVG OBP SLG
10 SAL 404 118 22 1 1 32 73 469 .292 .375 .359
11 FSL 441 114 21 5 10 18 103 487 .259 .314 .397

 

 

Advanced Stats


XBH% BB% SO% HR% BABIP ISO
10 SAL 5.1 6.8 15.6 0.21 .353 .067
11 FSL 7.4 3.7 21.1 2.05 .312 .138