Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects: Three Hitters Impressing in the FCL

Which hitters are impressing for the FCL Pirates thus far?

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First baseman/outfielder Esmerlyn Valdez

19 year old first baseman/outfielder Esmerlyn Valdez has been one of the best hitters for the FCL Pirates and in the entire FCL so far this season. In his second season in the FCL, Valdez has made huge strides at the plate.

Last season, Valdez hit for a .232/.371/.394 slash line with a 117 wRC+ in 124 plate appearances. He drew walks at a 14.5% rate, struck out in 23.4% of his trips to the plate, and had an isolated slugging (ISO) of .162

Through his first 109 PAs this season Valdez's numbers have exploded. He hit for a .394/.459/.628 slash line with a wRC+ of 176. His walk rate is still a strong 11%, he's struck out at a 24.8% clip, and his ISO has risen to .234.

If Valdez continues to hit the ball the way he has he will continue to improve his prospect status. It should also put him in position to start the 2024 season with Low-A Bradenton.