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Braves Minor League Player Review: Geraldo Quintero

Quintero struggled in 2023 but has one of the better hit tools in the system

San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

Geraldo Quintero burst onto the scene in 2022, putting up a strong season for the Atlanta Braves’ A-ball affiliate in Augusta. He struggled in 2023 and opinions remain mixed on his future, but he remains a young player with some potential.

How acquired

Quintero was signed as an International Free Agent in February 2019.

Preseason Report Card

Given his modest $40,000 signing bonus, the expectations for Quintero were certainly low. He put up a solid year in the Dominican Summer League in 2019, but was largely an afterthought when baseball shut down in 2020, and he struggled to get back in a rhythm in 2021. Still, the then-20-year-old was tested with his first chance to play full-season ball in 2022, and he put up one of the better seasons in the organization. Quintero showed off impressive bat-to-ball skills in Augusta and had a .358 OBP and 118 wRC+ across 91 games. He had a taste of Rome over the last month of the season, where his numbers dipped, but still looked promising for his age. Quintero is severely undersized, listed at just 5’5”, and while his contact ability impressed, there was a need for him to improve in every other facet heading into 2023. Given his age, his strength was his biggest question.

What we saw in 2023

Quintero added some strength going into the 2023 season, but it didn’t show up all too much on the stat sheet. He hit just three home runs and had 24 fewer extra-base hits compared to 2022, while his contact rates continued to dip as he advanced up the minor league rungs. While he has maintained well-above-average contact ability, especially given his age relative to competition, showing more gap power will be necessary for him to get a major league opportunity down the road.

There were some statistical improvements to note throughout the season after he got off to a horrible start. Specifically, in July, Quintero drew twelve walks to only seven strikeouts in 75 plate appearances. He hit .273 with a .378 on base percentage over the final three months of play, but still was plagued by a sub-.100 ISO (isolated power mark, or slugging less batting average). Quintero has hit the ball on the ground more often as he has advanced, a trend that he and the Braves will likely want to reverse in order to give Quintero any chance at some pop.

2024 Outlook

Quintero is going to be Rule 5 Draft-eligible this winter, but given a subpar performance at High-A with just a 92 wRC+, there is zero chance he is going to be selected by a team. Still, the Braves will have the ever-lingering chance of losing him which could spur them to be more aggressive than they might with other players. I know I’ve bemoaned his lack of power plenty throughout this review, but his style of play simply doesn’t fit with the Braves approach. Quintero is obviously limited by his frame (and playing in a pitcher-friendly league and home ballpark), but his 31 percent fly ball rate would be a hindrance if it were continue. The biggest issue with all of this is that Quintero is going to have to hit in order to advance. His lack of arm strength makes him a non-starter on the left side of the infield, and his quickness is closer to average, making him not an easy sell even at second base. He has developed well enough as a second base defender to have average potential there, but the lack of versatility on the defensive end will be a major problem if he can’t grow into enough power to be a good major league hitter.

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