Phillies Prospect #19: Quintin Berry

Quintin Berry led his league in stolen bases for the second straight season. If he can improve his plate discipline by just a little, he can run away with stolen base titles at any level he plays.

Acquired: Drafted by the Phillies in the fifth round of the 2006 Draft.
Bats: L   Throws: L
Height: 6' 0"   Weight: 170 pounds
Birth Date: November 21, 1984
2008 Team(s): Clearwater
Positions/Games: CF (131 G), DH (1 G)
School: San Diego State
2008 Ranking: 15

Why Berry slid to 19: By all accounts, Quintin Berry didn't have a bad season with Clearwater in 2008, but he did slide down from his 2007 season when he hit .312 with Lakewood. The 35-point drop in his on-base percentage is the biggest issue, because Berry simply needs to get on base to be successful and last season, his strikeout rate increased while his walk percentage decreased and those are dangerous signs for a player climbing up the ladder in the minors. Don't take Berry's slight fall in the rankings as a message that he's not going to be successful, it's just necessary to note that there were a couple of disappointing stats in 2008 that are of slight concern.

Category Quintin Berry Florida State League
AB/2B 21.29 20.57
AB/3B 511.00 139.26
AB/HR 170.33 52.95
AB/RBI 11.88 8.51
AB/R 8.11 7.79
AB/BB 7.86 10.15
AB/KO 4.96 4.74
SB % 78 66
AVG .272 .256
OBP .360 .329
Categories with numbers in white show areas where Berry outperformed the average player in the Florida State League during the 2008 season. Categories with numbers in black show areas where he was below the league average.

Batting and Power: Berry's strikeout numbers have always been a little higher than you would like to see out of this type of player and they increased slightly last season. The potential is there for Berry to hit a solid .280 or higher, but he needs to increase his plate discipline in order to maximize his opportunities on base and take advantage of his fantastic speed and his knowledge of how to steal bases at a high percentage. There isn't much power in Berry's game, but that's quite all right, since he can do so many other things well at the plate.

Baserunning and Speed: Over the last two seasons, Berry has stolen a total of 106 bases and swiped them with an impressive success rate of 77%. After winning the South Atlantic League stolen base title in 2007, Berry made it two in a row by taking the Florida State League stolen base title in 2008. He doesn't steal bases just on speed; Berry is a student of stealing bases and knows how to get the best jump possible and take advantage of pitcher's flaws. His speed in the outfield is put to good use and he has the ability to run down balls hit into the gaps that other center fielders simply can't get to.

Defense: Berry can play in left or center, but his speed makes him much better suited to playing in center field. He not only chases down balls hit to the gaps, but goes back on balls very well and knows what he's doing defensively. If there is a chink in the armor of his defense, it would be his arm, which is average, but Berry has worked very hard to do things better mechanically and put himself in a better position to throw after making a catch, so he's covering up any weakness in his arm by doing all of the other things that he needs to do to throw out runners. Last season, he threw out eight runners, not a bad number for a guy who was thought to have a weak arm.

Projection: There is a lot to like about Quintin Berry. This is going to be an interesting season, because any holes in his game will be exposed at the Double-A level. Watch to see how his on-base percentage translates, because that's going to be the telling stat for Berry this season. There is no reason to believe that he can't be a solid major league player once he reaches his peak, as long as he can get on base enough to take advantage of his great speed.

ETA: If all goes well, Berry would be fighting for major league recognition in the spring of 2011, but he may need a little more seasoning at the minor league level. Don't be surprised to see a bit of a stumble, especially early in the season at Double-A, but once he gets things down, he'll be good-to-go. In the spring of 2011, he would be 27 years old, so he's on a decent target rate, but can't afford to have too many issues to conquer at either the Double-A or Triple-A levels.

Quintin Berry's career stats

Year/Team HR RBI AVG G AB R H 2B 3B SB SB% BB KO OBP
2006 Batavia 0 13 .219 62 210 34 46 2 2 19 83% 25 51 .314
2007 Lakewood 3 44 .312 126 487 86 152 19 4 55 75% 61 85 .395
2008 Clearwater 3 43 .272 134 511 63 139 24 1 51 78% 65 103 .360
TOTALS 6 100 .279 322 1208 181 337 45 7 125 78% 151 239 .367



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