Offseason Prospect Overview: Reivaj Garcia

Reivaj Garcia

Reivaj Garcia

Season Review

reivajgarcia
You really couldn't really ask for a better season out of a 16-year old. Reivaj Garcia (his first name is Javier spelled backwards) surprised many by earning the starting second base job on the AZL Cubs2 squad, which made him the youngest of any Minor Leaguer playing in the U.S. last year. As if winning that job wasn't impressive enough, Garcia went on to hit .300 on the season, and proved remarkably consistent at the plate throughout by hitting at least .280 every month. Garcia didn't turn 17 until the middle of August as the AZL season was winding down. 

Positives

Obviously, Garcia's hit tool is extremely advanced for his age. Often competing against competition several years older than him, Garcia laced line drives to all fields from both sides of the plate. That's right, the young infielder is also a switch hitter. He did struggle a bit from the right side, as he failed to draw a walk and made far less contact than as a lefty, but he also showed a bit more pop.

Beyond his advanced hitting ability scouts also raved about his instincts in the field and on the bases. He was signed as a shortstop, but the Cubs played him at second and reports are he handled it well, and most scouts expect he will remain there long term. Garcia's speed is only average, but he was successful stealing some bags.

Negatives

Garcia is not blessed with any standout physical gifts. He doesn't project to have much power, his speed and range are pedestrian, and his arm is considered nothing special. He'll have get by on his hand-eye coordination and instincts. And that is tough.

Summation

Overachieving second baseman are my personal kryptonite when it comes to grading prospects. I've been burned several times before and have even told myself "never again" because their path to success is arduous and often requires them to reach their full ceiling in order to make it in the Majors. But given just how young Garcia is I am allowing myself to get my hopes up a little.


Until he finishes maturing physically it will be difficult to assess if he will be able to play shortstop on a part-time basis. If he can it would do wonders for his chances as a prospect. It is very difficult for a player limited to second base only to earn a Major League job. They have to excel offensively.

2019 Outlook

It will be interesting to see how much the Cubs push Garcia in 2019. He still needs to get stronger, and another season in the AZL may be on the docket, but it would be really cool to see the 17-year old make the Eugene roster once the short season league kicks off. He paired with fellow Mexican teenager Luis Verdugo in the middle infield for the Cubs2 team last year and I can envision the organization keeping them together, be it in Mesa or Eugene.

Comments

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  • It seems the Cubs have a bunch of middle in field prospects that are interesting.

  • In reply to Hagsag:

    The Cubs do prioritize up the middle athletes in the draft and IFA.

  • Harry would have had a blast trying to pronounce Reivaj's first name backwards!

  • In reply to DropThePuck:

    Javier... Harry might pronounce the ‘J’ as a hard Jay though. :o)

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