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2023 Willie McCovey Memorial Community Prospect List No. 42

Who is the 42nd-best prospect in the Giants system?

Diego Velasquez making a throw from shortstop Photo by John E. Moore III/Getty Images

As the 2023 MLB season gets ready to start, we get ready to finish off the 2023 Willie McCovey Memorial Community Prospect List, our annual group project in which we rank the top 44 prospects in the San Francisco Giants organization. We have only three names left to add, and then we’re all done.

Coming in at No. 41 on the list is shortstop Diego Velasquez, who makes his CPL debut.

Velasquez, who was signed as an international free agent from Venezuela just over two years ago, struggled in his first year of professional baseball but bounced back last year. Playing rookie ball in the Arizona Complex League, the switch-hitter hit .277/.369/.352, good for a 106 wRC+. He finished the year with Low-A San Jose, where he struggled in just 47 plate appearances, hitting .159/.213/.182, for a wRC+ of 6.

The raw numbers may not be super inspiring, but there’s a lot of reason for optimism with Velasquez. He struck out just 16.3% of the time in the ACL last year, and walked 11.1% of the time. Those are exciting numbers for a young prospect. Which brings us to arguably the most exciting part of Velasquez’s profile: he didn’t turn 19 until after the season ended. He may have struggled as an 18-year old shortstop in A-ball, but he was still an 18-year old shortstop in A-ball, which is exciting.

The Giants will hope they can help Velasquez find more power as he grows and develops, since he’s hit just one home run (and has just 12 extra-base hits in total) in 417 career plate appearances.

Now let’s add to the list, and for the final time this year we have new names to choose from.

The list so far

  1. Kyle Harrison — LHP
  2. Marco Luciano — SS
  3. Casey Schmitt — 3B
  4. Luis Matos — CF
  5. Vaun Brown — OF
  6. Grant McCray — CF
  7. Aeverson Arteaga — SS
  8. Carson Whisenhunt — LHP
  9. Reggie Crawford — LHP/DH
  10. Patrick Bailey — C
  11. Mason Black — RHP
  12. Heliot Ramos — OF
  13. Eric Silva — RHP
  14. Jairo Pomares — OF
  15. Cole Waites — RHP
  16. Keaton Winn — RHP
  17. R.J. Dabovich — RHP
  18. Tyler Fitzgerald — INF
  19. Ryan Murphy — RHP
  20. Landen Roupp — RHP
  21. Will Wilson — INF
  22. Adrian Sugastey — C
  23. Trevor McDonald — RHP
  24. Tristan Beck — RHP
  25. Will Bednar — RHP
  26. Nick Swiney — LHP
  27. Rayner Arias — OF
  28. Carson Seymour — RHP
  29. Hunter Bishop — OF
  30. Sean Hjelle — RHP
  31. Ryan Reckley — SS
  32. Randy Rodriguez — RHP
  33. Brett Wisely — INF
  34. Blake Sabol — C
  35. Jose Cruz — RHP
  36. Hayden Birdsong — RHP
  37. P.J. Hilson — OF
  38. Brett Auerbach — UTIL
  39. Nick Zwack — LHP
  40. Gerelmi Maldonado — RHP
  41. Diego Velasquez — SS

Note: Clicking on the above names will link to the CPL where they were voted onto the list.

On to No. 42!

No. 42 prospect nominees

Jared Dupere — 24.2-year old OF, 33 wRC+ in High-A (53 PA), 132 wRC+ in Low-A (143 PA), 132 wRC+ in ACL (70 PA)
Ricardo Genovés — 23.10-year old C, 70 wRC+ in AAA (147 PA), 81 wRC+ in AA (203 PA)
Bryce Johnson — 27.5-year old CF, -23 wRC+ in MLB (19 PA), 97 wRC+ in AAA (352 PA)
Wade Meckler — 22.11-year old OF, 214 wRC+ in Low-A (50 PA), 149 wRC+ in ACL (50 PA)
Manuel Mercedes — 20.6-year old RHP, 6.26 FIP in Low-A (80.2 IP)
Matt Mikulski — 23.10-year old LHP, 5.40 FIP in Low-A (79 IP)
Onil Perez — 20.6-year old C, 102 wRC+ in ACL (171 PA)

Note: Each player’s first name links to their Baseball-Reference page, and their last name links to their Fangraphs page.

Reminder: voting is now in the comments!