2011 Prospect Watching: Brown, Maggie, Ngoepe, And Santos

Gift Ngoepe  —  Bats: Both / Throws Right; 5′ 10″,  165 lb
Ngoepe is a 21-year-old South African, who will be entering his third year of pro ball with the Pirates.  Like Walker Gourley and Jorge Bishop, Ngoepe got to make a 2-game fill-in stint with Bradenton, where he had one hit in 4 at-bats.  When the NY-Penn season began, Ngoepe reported to State College.  He started slowly at the plate, hitting .237 in June with 5 RBI.  He did better in July, up to a .264 average and 12 RBI.  But like in the 2009 season, Ngoepe slumped badly in the late part of the season, hitting just .132 in August, and .097 over the last 10 games.  He finished with a .205 average, 13 doubles, 5 triples, one homer, and 20 RBI.  His strikeout rate was high in the GCL in 2009 (32.5%) and it remained high in 2010 —  68 strikeouts in 64 games (29.7%).  Ngoepe hits lefties much better than righties:  .283 vs. .178.  His speed is decent, with 11 stolen bases, and that’s what helped him with the triples.  Ngoepe played both shortstop and second base, and he is regarded as having solid defensive abilities and a strong arm.  Ngoepe probably needs more time at State College, though he could see part of the season at West Virginia. 

Adalberto Santos  —  R/R,  5′  11″,  185 lb
Santos was selected in the 22nd round of the 2010 draft, after his senior season at Oregon State.  He reported to State College, where he had an outstanding season.  Santos hit .319, with 15 doubles, 7 triples, 3 homers, and 35 RBI (team best).  He was pretty consistent at the plate, with a .344 average in June, .313 in July, and .323 in August.  He did have some split — .200 against lefties and .364 against right handed pitching.  His good speed allowed him to steal 17 bases, the most on the Spikes.  Santos was listed as a second baseman, though he played outfield in college and in both corner outfield spots at State College.  His speed is useful in the outfield.  Santos is ready to move up to West Virginia, but the outfield there is going to be crowded, so he could be back in the middle infield.

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