Nationals Prospect #21: Marvin Lowrance

Marvin Lowrance continues to get better and better. He's delivered 20 home runs in each of the past two seasons, but doesn't always get the attention that he deserves.

Acquired: Drafted by Montreal in the 7th round of the 2004 Draft.
Bats: L   Throws: L
Height: 6' 0"   Weight: 215 lbs.
Birth Date: July 16, 1984
2008 Team(s): Potomac (74 G), Harrisburg (47 G)
Positions/Games Played: LF (81), DH (33), RF (4)
School: Golden West College (California)

Batting and Power: Marvin Lowrance has hit 20 home runs in each of the past two seasons and hit .272 over that span, but still isn't getting a lot of respect. When Lowrance was drafted by the Expos (remember them?) he came to the franchise with a lot of potential, but hadn't shown much of that potential until the 2007 season when he played at both Potomac and Hagerstown. The Nationals decided to start him back at Potomac last season and he was buried there until a promotion to Double-A Harrisburg in July. Lowrance still has some work to do on making a little more contact at the plate, but once he conquers that hurdle, he should be able to hit consistently in the mid-.270s and continue punching about 20 home runs per season. The move to Double-A didn't dampen his offense, which often happens with young hitters.

Baserunning and Speed: Lowrance is a pretty big guy and doesn't generate a lot of speed. He has decent instincts on the bases and doesn't run into many mistakes, but he's also not going to steal many bases in his career.

Defense: While his lack of speed keeps him from getting to many balls hit into the gap, Lowrance will catch the ones that he can get to. He's sure-handed and doesn't show any hot dog style play in the outfield. As a left fielder, he's got a career .981 fielding percentage and has been showing improvement as he continues to work on honing his skills. His arm is average, but he wasn't putting himself in good position to throw runners out from the outfield, which the Nationals believe that they've taken some steps to solving that problem, which helped Lowrance pick up six assists in 41 games for Harrisburg.

Projection: The good news about Marvin Lowrance is that he continues to get better and continues to work at his game. There is actually still some room for improvement, but he's shown solid improvement over the past year or so and will likely continue to show more. It would be unfortunate for the Nationals to start him off anywhere below Double-A this season. Watch for him to potentially make a mid-to-late season jump to Triple-A and it will be interesting to see what type of numbers he can put up at that level after having some more time to develop at Harrisburg. Could the Nationals challenge him and have him start the year at Triple-A? It's possible, but since they've already got a glut of outfielders, there's no reason to rush Lowrance and this time around, he would likely be better served by not moving up a level to start the season.

Marvin Lowrance's career stats

Year/Team HR RBI AVG G AB R H 2B 3B BB KO SB OBP SLG
2004 Vermont 3 20 .286 53 185 23 53 6 1 28 39 0 .380 .378
2005 GCL Nationals 2 9 .321 8 28 4 9 1 0 3 2 0 .387 .571
2005 Savannah 4 35 .288 57 212 27 61 15 1 16 50 2 .353 .425
2006 Potomac 5 48 .257 112 377 47 97 20 3 43 75 2 .341 .366
2007 Potomac 16 51 .256 98 348 57 89 22 1 61 87 2 .371 .463
2007 Hagerstown 4 11 .326 24 89 12 29 5 0 18 13 0 .444 .517
2008 Potomac 12 39 .268 74 250 39 67 17 0 37 59 2 .373 .480
2008 Harrisburg 8 24 .286 47 154 27 44 13 0 20 40 1 .376 .526
TOTALS 54 237 .273 473 1643 236 449 99 6 226 365 9 .368 .439



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