Luis Alexander Basabe

Luis Alexander Basabe at the plate for the Dash, 2018 (Clinton Cole / FutureSox)

Luis Alexander Basabe at the plate for the Dash, 2018 (Clinton Cole / FutureSox)

Position: OF
Born: 8/26/1996
Ht: 6’0” Wt: 160
B/T: S/R
Acquired: Acquired from Boston Red Sox as part of the Chris Sale trade return on December 6th, 2016
Career Stats

FutureSox Prospect Rankings

  • #9 - 2017 Preseason
  • #20 - 2017 Midseason
  • #21 - 2018 Preseason
  • #10 - 2018 Midseason

FutureSox Media

Accolades

  • New York Penn League All Star, Midseason 2015
  • #6 Prospect in the New York Penn League, 2015 (Baseball America)
  • South Atlantic League All Star, Postseason 2016
  • #9 Prospect in the South Atlantic League, 2016 (Baseball America)
  • Best Defensive Outfielder in White Sox system, pre-season 2018 (Baseball America)
  • White Sox Hitting Prospect of the Month, April 2018
  • Futures Game, 2018

Scouting report

Luis Alexander Basabe was the 'third' piece in the Chris Sale blockbuster trade, but that’s more credence to the preceding names than a blemish on Luis. Basabe was signed out of Venezuela by the Boston Red Sox in 2012 for a $450,000 bonus (as was his twin brother, Luis Alejandro Basabe), and he was just 16 years old when he played his first slate of rookie ball in the DSL. He made it stateside in 2014 as a 17-year-old, and flashed some of his tools in just over 100 at bats. Basabe was challenged in 2015 with an assignment to short season A-ball. Roughly three years younger than the average competition, he put himself on the map with a .243/.340/.401 line while showing some game power and the speed to go with it (15 SB). He was promoted again in 2016 to Greenville in the South Atlantic League, where the switch-hitter slashed .258/.328/.447 with 24 2B, 8 3B, 12 HR, and 25 SB in his greatest test yet. His ISO rose to .189 but was countered with a 25.7% K-rate. 2017 though sawhim struggle quite a bit at the plate, hitting .221 with minimal power numbers (though his walk and strikeout rates are basically in line with his previous years). The level challenge can certainly be a factor in that, but speaking with his coaches, the word is that his knee was really bothering him throughout the season. 2018 seems to confirm that, as he improved in all facets with Winston-Salem (873 OPS) for 58 games before being promoted to AA Birmingham in June in his age 21 season.

With Basabe, the early production is really gravy at this point. He has enough tools to carry his prospect stock beyond just the encouraging results. Any time a player features potentially four above average tools, the betting man is willing to wager on the hit tool coming around in hopes of churning out a dynamic player (and even that tool gets FV 50's from evaluators). With Basabe, his profile is buoyed by plus speed, which has translated on the base paths but has yet to fully manifest in the outfield. His defense remains raw but he has the speed to stick in center with improved routes and the arm/power package to profile in right as a fallback. Luis currently gets most of his power out of his solid bat speed, but he certainly has room in his frame to add mass, so there’s still some projection there. As is often the case, the progression of Basabe’s hit tool will script his career. He’s shown the ability to take a walk and has sustained respectful OBP outputs, but he struggles with pitch recognition and the K-rate has been a red flag at times, especially from the right side. Those who dream see Basabe as a player who could hit 25 bombs and steal 25 bags at a premium position, while his safe floor is more that of a speedy 4th OF.

Major League Outlook: Starting CF ceiling, speedy backup floor
ETA: 2020

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