All Yoyner Fajardo does is hit.
He has one of the highest averages in the Pittsburgh Pirates system.
Yet the 23-year-old from the Dominican Republic is a platoon player with the Greensboro Grasshoppers. Those two things don’t really add up.
Fajardo is trying to hit his way to the majors despite some other weaknesses to his overall game.
A bit of a late signing on the international side, Fajardo signed in March of 2018, not long before his 18th birthday. He hit throughout the lower levels, but has struggled to find a defensive home. The lack of a position kept him from seeing regular time last year. He played shortstop early in his career, but that spot was quickly ruled out and since he’s been bouncing between second base and the corner outfield spots, even playing some third base as well.
Fajardo is hitting well this year for Greensboro while playing half of the time. He has a .333/.387/.464 slash line in 18 games, playing second base and right field.
Greensboro has a lineup loaded with prospects, even after Henry Davis was promoted. That has kept Fajardo from getting more playing time. That hasn’t kept him from hitting.
If you want someone in the Pirates system to get on base in a big spot, Fajardo is your man. Heck, he can even get to second base on a steal. He’s a .313 career hitter, with a solid approach at the plate that leads to decent walk/strikeout numbers. He’s a throwback hitter in an era where everyone else is swinging for the fences and strikeouts are a big part of every game.
Fajardo has three career homers in 570 at-bats. That really says it all.
You could overlook power missing if all of the other tools were strong. His value right now is limited to getting on base at a high rate and adding speed to the bases. He’s basically a pinch-hitter/pinch-runner, which is a nice bench role for a good team in the majors, but not how you get through the minors.
What we need to see is for Fajardo to get one position and stay there, just to see what that bat and speed could do in a full-time role. Greensboro has a group of infielders and outfielders right now who are not producing, so there are options for a position. Now might be the best time to see what the Pirates have in Fajardo.