Bradenton Statcast: Who Is Hitting The Ball Well?

The Bradenton Marauders are one of the few minor league teams that have advanced metrics available for their players. This allows you to get a really good idea of how players are doing beyond the base numbers we usually follow.

For hitters, that includes exit velocity and launch angle, as finding the right medium in both only increases your chances of getting on base. On the pitching side, average velocity, spin rate, and break are among the things available through Baseball Savant for Bradenton.

No one is expecting players at the Single-A level to put up the same exit velocity as major leaguers, but gauging how they are doing in Bradenton can potentially project who may be able to develop major league power.

Here are three position players that are putting up numbers worth following at Bradenton right now.

Sergio Campana

A name that you probably didn’t expect to make it on a list about the offensive side of things, Campana (pictured) has been hitting the ball a lot better as of late and the metrics show. While his slash numbers aren’t great (.217/.316/.278), Campana is hitting the ball harder and squaring up, which has led to a better offensive output this month.

Campana’s average is over 100 points higher in May than it was in April, so too is his slugging percentage.

Part of that is due to his Hard Hit%, which is slightly below what is average at the major league level (35.6% in the majors, Campana’s is 35%). A ball is considered ‘hard hit’ if it has an exit velocity of 95 mph or higher. Of the 57 batted balls Campana has had this year, 20 of them have been at 95 mph or higher.

On the Bradenton roster, no other batter has ‘barreled’ more balls at a better rate than Campana, with a 5.26% mark. The major league average currently is 6.7%. A ‘barreled’ ball must have an exit velocity of at least 98 mph, with the degree of the launch angle expanding depending on how the ball is hit.

Having the perfect blend of exit velocity and launch angle increases your opportunity of getting on base and hitting for power. So Campana’s strong May shouldn’t be too much of a surprise as nobody on Bradenton has a better blend currently than him.

Brenden Dixon

Maybe a more traditional pick, Dixon has performed above major league average in a couple of categories in the early goings of the season.

No player has a higher average exit velocity than Dixon (88.62-mph) and he is the only one that is above the major league average in the metric (88.4-mph).

A batted ball that has a launch angle between eight and 32 degrees is in the ‘sweet spot’. A line drive is looked at anything in between 10 and 25 degrees, just at the right angle that will avoid the infield and get down before anyone in the outfield can get there. Dixon has an average launch angle of 16.88.

With an above average exit velocity and launch angle right in the middle of the line drive mark, there isn’t much surprise that Dixon is second on the team in average and first in slugging percentage among qualified Bradenton hitters.

Brenden Dixon: Approach Leading To Success As Bradenton’s Table Setter

Rodolfo Nolasco

Another name that shouldn’t be a surprise, as Nolasco’s raw power was one of his most talked about tools. He joined Dixon has the only two players on Bradenton with an exit velocity at or above major league average.

When it comes to hitting the ball hard, no one does it at a higher rate than Nolasco. Of the 77 batted balls Nolasco has this year, 33 of hit the 95-mph threshold to be considered a ‘hard hit’. His 42.6 hard hit% is seven points higher than the major league average, and he’s also just over the ‘SweetSpot%’ medium as well at 33.7%.

He’s also hit the hardest ball on record this year for Bradenton, a 110.3-mph double, that also had a 13-degree launch angle.

Nolasco has been one of the many hitters struggling this year, as he is currently only hitting .210 on the season. He is hitting the ball hard, and if he can continue to do so, he should eventually start to see the ball drop in for hits.

Bonus Prospects

There are other players with notable Statcast numbers. Jase Bowen is among the team leaders in barrel rate (4.76%), but hasn’t quite figured out the launch angle side of things. Tsung-Che Cheng and Luke Brown are among the team leaders in SweetSpot%, and are both above major league average, but they lack the exit velocity at the time to get enough solid contact on the ball.

When used properly, these numbers can help you see the kind of contact you are making and compare it to those who are succeeding at the highest level, and make the small adjustments to put you on that right path.


Williams: The Growing Pains of Single-A

Carlos Jimenez Has Emerged As One of the Pirates’ Best Lower Level Pitching Prospects

Anthony Solometo: High Changeup Usage Highlights Debut

Bradenton Statcast: Who Is Hitting The Ball Well?

Tsung-Che Cheng: “He’s the type of guy who has an elite level of focus, an elite level of drive”

Joelvis Del Rosario is Starting to Make a Name For Himself

Brenden Dixon: Approach Leading To Success As Bradenton’s Table Setter

Anthony began writing over 10 years ago, starting a personal blog to cover the 2011 MLB draft, where the Pirates selected first overall. After bouncing around many websites covering hockey, he refocused his attention to baseball, his first love when it comes to sports. He eventually found himself here at Pirates Prospects in late 2021, where he covers the team’s four full season minor league affiliates.

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Bradenton’s lineup doesnt inspire too much excitement but hopefully some of these hard hit numbers translate to success as these guys get deeper into the season


I wish I could be optimistic about Campana, but he makes it very hard. Exit velocity is great, but first you need to hit the ball. His strikeout rate is near 40%. And, while he may hit it hard, it doesn’t translate into XBHs. He has 5 XBH in 150 plate appearances. He is not a good outfielder (although playing him in center doesn’t do him any favors), so he is going to need to hit his way to the majors. Hard to see that right now. Still young, so there is always hope.


Great article Anthony

I’m not seeing the summary level data from Baseball Savant.

Do you know how they handle bunts I’m their calculations?

In the regular game feeds they are not distinguishable from other hits except for the very low exit velocity.

I’m concerned that the current calculations are making some of the bunters (e.g. Cheng and Brown) look worse than they should.

Last edited 9 months ago by kja1970

Yeah I dind’t think Savant actually aggregated Statcast data at this level, just provides the little game feed hack.

Is Murph scrubbing each game and running them himself? Share the goods! 😉


Unfortunately I don’t think the regular statcast feed splits out the bunts.

For example, on May 1st, Tsung-Che Cheng had a single in the 5th inning that shows an exit velocity of 38.1 mph

It doesn’t take too many of those to pull down the average exit velocity.

This same issue showed up a few years ago when people complained about Lolo Sanchez’s very low EV


And a 33.7 mph double play on a bunt from 4/8/2022


And a 30.5 mph single on 4/26/2022


And a 13.7 mph single on 5/10/2022


Holy smokes, that is some dedicated work my friend. We’re extremely lucky!


Anyone else looking for more from Mojica this year? Was hoping his 2nd year in Bradenton would be a breakout season. Guess there’s still time, but he needs to get going.


Yes, I’ve been waiting myself, so far not great.

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