Waiver Worthy: Luis Urias Is Here, But That Doesn’t Mean He Matters…

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

The reports are that the Padres will summon Luis Urias to the Majors, and most will likely think that they need to race to the waiver wire to scoop him up.  However when you look at his Triple-A numbers, which came in the Pacific Coast League, it’s fair to wonder if he brings enough to the table to warrant our attention:

.296 (133-450), 8 HR, 45 RBI, 83 R, 2 SB

You can argue that there’s a little bit more upside in his power, having added 30 doubles and 7 triples, but it’s not like he’s going to suddenly morph into a 25+ HR threat.  The 8 HR represented a career high, as he’s hit 17 HR over 1,756 AB over his minor league career.  Still just 21-years old it’s fair to think he could develop into a 12-15 HR hitter, but expecting anything past that in the short-term (especially playing half his games in San Diego) would appear to be misguided.

As MLB.com noted in their scouting report:

Urias’ bat-to-ball skills are impressive, and he produces hard line drives across the entire field with a compact, level swing. His raw power, meanwhile, is better than his numbers suggest, though Urias’ should be a consistent source of extra-base hits thanks to his knack for pounding the gaps.

He’s also never shown much speed, with his career high being 10 SB back in 2014.  Rich Wilson of Prospect 361 described him as having “average-at-best foot speed” which tells us all we really need to know.

Currently we’d say he profiles as a 12/8 type middle infielder, which isn’t going to excite anyone.  He does bring a strong approach, turning an 8.7% SwStr% into a manageable 20.5% strikeout rate and 12.6% walk rate.  Given the other marks we’d expect better than his current strikeout rate, which he showed in ’17 as he walked (68) more than he struck out (65) at Double-A while posting an impressive 6.4% SwStr%.

Even if he got back to that type of level, which is unlikely in the Majors, does a .310 hitter with a touch of power and little speed really excite anyone for the remainder of the season?  He should develop into a little bit more, in time, but it’s also not enough to get overly excited about.  From a 2018 perspective he could likely be ignored.

Sources – MILB.com, MLB.com, Prospect 361, Fangraphs

One comment

  1. Tiger says:

    Urias is going to be a star. You are right that those counting stars might not be great, but for those of us in on-base and slugging leagues…he could hit .300/.400/.450 with tons of walks, doubles and triples!
    Me likey!!!

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