Lonnie White Jr.
Lonnie White Jr. was one of the team’s many high school picks from the 2021 draft. White barely played in 2022 because of injuries. He only appeared in two games and stepped to the plate a total of seven times. Although he would once again open the 2023 season on the injured list, he returned in the first week of June and didn’t look back.
White Jr. collected 276 plate appearances between the Florida Complex League and Low-A Bradenton, batting a combined .276/.406/.476. White may have struck out 27.2% of the time, but he offset that with a 15.6% walk rate. He went yard nine times with 16 doubles but also went 18/21 in stolen base attempts, showing a combination of power and speed. All told White Jr.’s contributions with the bat came to a .417 wOBA and 139 wRC+.
Most of White’s playing time came at Bradenton, where he had 200 plate appearances. He posted a .883 OPS, .413 wOBA along with a 140 wRC+ throughout his time at Low-A. While he may have struck out 56 times, leading to a 28% K-rate, he also walked 32 times and hit eight home runs with a .228 isolated slugging percentage.
White Jr. may have only had 200 plate appearances at Bradenton, but he did exceptionally well. There were 95 players in the Florida State League with 200+ plate appearances, and White Jr. had the third-best wRC+. It is reasonable to be concerned about the strikeouts, but you can’t keep someone at one level forever, especially someone as talented as White Jr. Let’s see what he can do at Greensboro next season.