StrategySeptember 5, 2011

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Future Rookies: Week 23

By Josh Shepardson

The minor league season is over in many leagues, and in the postseason in others. A number of prospects have been added to big league squads as rosters were expanded to 40 on September 1. This week’s Future Rookies looks at the Eastern League Rookie of the Year, and Altoona Curve team MVP.

Starling Marte, OF, Pittsburgh Pirates, 22 years old

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Marte is a toolsy outfielder who’s best attribute is his plus-plus speed tool. He offers a bit of pop, but probably doesn’t project to his more than mid-to-high teens home run totals at his major league peak. His average was tremendous and his hit tool is a plus, but he is a free swinger that may be able to be exploited a bit as he continues to move up the ladder by better pitchers until he refines his strikezone judgement. His centerfield defense is a plus, and may be good enough to move Andrew McCutchen to a corner outfield spot in the future. An outfield defense that features Jose Tabata, Marte, and McCutchen would be death to flyballs, and is reason for excitement for Pirates fans. He’ll probably make his debut sometime next year. Most likely the Pirates will open him in Triple-A, but it’s not entirely out of the question that he could be given a chance at winning a job in the spring, especially if Major League Baseball does away with it’s ridiculous Super Two service time rule.

Josh is a graduate of SUNY Cortland's Sport Management program, and an aspiring fantasy writer. You can catch up with Josh in the Cafe Forums where he posts as B-Chad. You can also follow his work at The Hardball Times and follow him on Twitter (BChad50).
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