Jefry Marte Scouting Report (2010)
In reviewing previous pieces about current Oakland Athletics and former New York Mets third base prospect Jefry Marte, I realized he has been woefully under-covered on Scouting the Sally. While former teammate Wilmer Flores has received multiple full write ups and a plethora of videos, Marte has received much less attention. With only a game report from early 2009 and a few swings worth of video, I felt it was time to compile a full scouting report with video from the 2010 season.
Physical Projection: Jefry Marte played the 2010 season in better shape than in 2009. Towards the end of that year, Marte had become bloated and slow and apparently took the offseason to work off a few pounds around his midsection. Still noticeable in 2010 were his muscular shoulders, forearms and lower half which leaves additional room to fill out as he matures.
Additional growth may mean a position switch for Marte. As a third baseman, he’s passable as an athlete for the position at present and does not move particularly well laterally. The Mets will have to be careful with his development as any size gained will need to be offset by agility work.
Offense: For about a year and a half, I lamented Marte’s offensive game as he simply showed no growth as a hitter. Just when I was ready to write him off, something clicked. Instead of flailing wildly at offspeed pitches, he stopped chasing and began forcing pitchers to throw fastballs in the zone. Once this happened, his fastball hitting prowess shone through as began crushing the pitch consistently. This led to a .354/.384/.585 July tear prior to an injury which ended his season prematurely.
This isn’t to say he’s out of the woods by any means. Marte has plenty of start-and-stop in his timing mechanism and lets an awful lot of power go to waste during his weight transfer. This has led to a slugging percentage of a middle infielder, not corner slugger which he needs to be.
Of course Marte still has plenty of time to work things out, but one has to be concerned about when an injury first considered to be relatively minor winds up costing him the remainder of the season. Injuries have cost Marte about a half season’s worth of plate appearances during his time in Savannah and that development time is vital to his long term projection.
Defense: Marte improved on a disasterous 2009 season by improving in all defensive areas. Like so many young players, as his bat warmed up, that confidence carried into the field where he began to charge balls, dive, and actually play hops instead of defending from his heels.
In game action, nothing stands out on defense which would make me think Marte’s future there is doomed. Don’t view this as a ringing endorsement however as he has plenty of work to do to project as an even average big league third baseman. Marte has a strong arm, acceptable hands, and charges slow rollers well. Where things go wrong is when Marte rushes to make close plays as he’s prone to errant throws. Prior to his injury, he had begun to slow the game down which was a very good sign.
Speed: A below average runner, speed simply is not a part of Marte’s game. At times, he seems to be running in quicksand.
Finally due a promotion heading into 2011, Marte should open at third base in Port St. Lucie hoping to build on a decent, albeit injury-shortened year in Savannah. People forget Marte is still only 19 and his first 700+ plate appearances as a member of the Sand Gnats were as a 17-18 year old.
Count me as one who needed that reminder as just writing this report forced me to me to really reflect on my feelings towards him as a former top-100 in some circles who has already been labeled a disappointment. Is Jefry Marte a surefire big leaguer? No, but he did make significant strides in 2010 and has somewhat redeemed himself as a prospect.
23 Jan 2014 / Mike Newman /
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