Boston Red Sox prospect Brainer Bonaci is finding some power in his swing
Brainer Bonaci has enjoyed an amazing first full season in the minor leagues. Playing in Low-A, the Boston Red Sox prospect hasn’t looked out of place at all. And that’s despite only turning 20 on July 9. However, there was one thing missing from his game.
Heading into July 22, Bonaci had a .242 average with a strong .380 OBP. But his slugging percentage sat at .314 on the season.
Bones gave you decent contact, a phenomenal eye, great speed, and elite defense at shortstop (with third base and second base mixed in as well). That lack of power was obvious though.
Honestly, it doesn’t bother me all that much. Not everyone needs to hit 30 home runs. Having someone that gets on-base and has good speed is extremely valuable. He could score a ton of runs as he gets himself on-base and into scoring position for the big hitters. I know a lot of people need everyone to hit homers, but I’m very happy with some traditional contact dudes in the lineup.
That being said, that’s not the game anymore. So Bonaci could be limited in how he is viewed if the slugging percentage continued to look like a batting average.
Something has happened since then. Before his July 22 game, Bonaci had 13 doubles, three triples, and zero home runs on the season (264 at-bats). Since then (76 at-bats), he’s smacked five doubles, three triples, and four home runs.
Suddenly, the Red Sox switch-hitting prospect has a .262/.400/.385 slash line. The average and on-base percentage have both gone up .020 since July 22. That’s impressive. But the .071 jump in slugging percentage is what really catches your eye.
Okay, let’s be honest for a minute here though. Is Bonaci suddenly going to be a 20-plus home run guy? Probably not. But he’s showing that there is some pop in his bat. Enough that you shouldn’t expect him to lightly slap a single to the opposite field every time he steps up to the plate.
Power is still the last tool in his game. Bones has plus-contact skills, with plus-plus-plus vision. He has 79 walks on the season, compared to 78 strikeouts. That’s wild, the man just doesn’t swing at bad pitches.
Bonaci also has great speed. This helps him stretch some extra-base hits and get some extra runs across the board. It has led to an impressive 21 steals as well.
Meanwhile, the defense is top-tier. Great range, footwork, glove work, and a strong/accurate arm. He’s going to make some circus-type highlight plays, while also being reliable on the routine ones.
After all of that, comes the power. It’s never going to be the star of the show. But now we know that there is something in the tank. And for Brainer Bonaci, that’s more than enough.