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Oakland A's 2017 top-50 prospect scouting report: Tyler Marincov, OF

Our Oakland A's 2017 top-50 prospects list is out. Now find out more about the players on that list. In this piece, a close look at top-50 prospect Tyler Marincov. Marincov finally made the jump to Double-A and he had a strong year. Can he continue to progress in 2017?

Name: Tyler Marincov
Position: OF
Height/Weight: 6’2’’, 205
Bats/Throws: R/R
Age: 25
How Acquired: Selected in the 8th round of the 2014 MLB draft.

A poor August somewhat obscured what was otherwise a breakthrough 2016 season for Tyler Marincov, who has positioned himself as one of the Oakland A’s top corner outfield prospects in the upper-level of their system. Can he take another step forward in 2017? Marincov’s 2016 season didn’t get off to a rousing start. The slugging right-fielder had a strong spring training that included hitting a homerun in a big league spring training game. However, when the final rosters were announced at the end of camp, Marincov found himself headed back to Stockton, a place he had called home for part of 2014 and all of 2015. Like many in the mid-levels of the A’s system, Marincov looked to be stuck in a roster crunch.

Marincov had shown plenty in previous years that would indicate he was ready to move up to Double-A. The A’s 2013 8th-round pick provided significant power in the Low-A Beloit Snappers’ line-up in 2014. In 111 games with the Snappers, he hit .261/.343/.479 with 16 homers and 17 stolen bases. That earned him a late-season promotion to High-A Stockton, where he joined fellow 2013 draft classmate Jaycob Brugman in providing a stretch-run push for the Ports’ playoff-bound club. Marincov, like Brugman, impressed in his stint with the Ports, hitting .317/.377/.533 with two homers in 17 games.

Tyler Marincov stats

2016 Stockton 147 .259 .343 .517 9 15 38 5 2
2016 Midland 374 .267 .340 .404 10 40 91 7 6
Career 1715 .257 .331 .426 54 177 455 49 28

At the start of 2015, Brugman jumped to Double-A while Marincov remained in Stockton. It seemed likely that Marincov would get an opportunity in Midland at some point during the season, but that opportunity never materialized. Marincov had a solid, but not spectacular, 2015 season with the Ports. He hit .257/.320/.409 with 14 homers and 14 stolen bases. Strikeouts were an issue for Marincov all season, as he whiffed 140 times. But he also showed gap power with 29 doubles and was a run-producer with 75 RBI.

Players that have to repeat levels – especially a third year – can often spiral into a funk, but Marincov did just the opposite at the start of 2016. He got off to a scorching start with the Ports, posting a 950 OPS in April. On May 17, Marincov got the call to Midland, replacing Ryon Healy, who was also blocked from a much-deserved promotion at the start of the season. Marincov arrived in Midland having put together an 860 OPS and nine homers in 36 games for the Ports.

It was a tall task for anyone to replace Healy’s production in the RockHounds’ line-up, but Marincov did as good a job as one could have anticipated. In June and July, he was one of the RockHounds’ most productive hitters and he carried a .289/.353/.441 line at the end of July. August wasn’t kind to Marincov, however, and he finished his Midland stint with a .267/.340/.404 line with 10 homers in 101 games. The August slump dulled his overall production, but Marincov’s numbers were still much better than the average Texas League line of .249/.316/.378 for 2016.

Marincov got hot again at the right time, and he was a big part of why the RockHounds were able to three-peat as Texas League champions. In eight post-season games, he hit .438/.514/.625 with a homer, three doubles and five walks.

Marincov has a traditional right-fielder profile. He is a good athlete with natural power to the all fields, major-league average speed and an above-average throwing arm. His biggest weakness as a pro has been controlling strike-zone. He improved on that some in 2016. Marincov’s walk numbers not only improved in 2016, but his strike-outs went down slightly and the quality of his contact improved significantly. His line-drive rate jumped nearly 6% over 2015. If he can continue to show increased selectivity, Marincov should see even better numbers in 2017.

A right-handed hitter, Marincov hit lefties significantly better than he hit righties last season and that is a trend that has held true throughout his career. His full-season career OPS versus southpaws is better than 900 and he could become an intriguing platoon candidate in the big leagues. He has good balance in his set-up at the plate and he uses a leg kick as a timing mechanism. At times, he can get out on his front foot if the leg kick is starting too early. His swing has a bit of an upper-cut to the finish, but it is still mostly level through the swing plane. Marincov's power allows him to reach the seats to all fields. He tends to pull most of his groundballs but his flyballs are fairly evenly distributed. 

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Marincov will compete with several veteran players for a spot in Triple-A next season. He may need to repeat a level at the start of 2017 again, but he should be one of the first to jump to Triple-A when rosters begin to shift given the quality of his work in 2016.

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