Position: Right-handed Pitcher
Marte made his professional debut with the DSL Tigers in 2006, as a 19-year old hard throwing phenom. After toiling at the Tigers Dominican complex for over a year, Luis finally got the chance to shine, and took advantage of every inning he was given. He dominated his competition, to the tune of a 1.38/0.86 line with over 12 K/9 (6:1 K:BB). Marte was stingy in every facet of his game, including his reluctance to yield homeruns, as none were hit off of him in 65 innings.
At the close of the season, Marte ranked 3rd in the DSL in both wins (8), and strikeouts (90), and 9th in ERA. His most dominating stretch came at the start of the season, where he notched a miniscule 0.36 ERA in 25 June innings; allowing only one run to cross home plate. For his efforts, Luis was named the TigsTown DSL Pitcher of the Year in 2006.
Luis' calling card is an above average fastball, complimented by a very raw curveball and change-up. His fastball sits in the 92-94 range, and can touch the upper 90s on some occasions. His small stature prevents him from generating much downward plane on his fastball, leaving it flat and potentially leaving it more hittable as he moves up the ladder. His curveball and change-up need significant work, but the makings of at least average pitches are there.
Marte's command of his fastball is above-average, as he can routinely work to all parts of the zone with regularity. He does get in trouble working in to lefties sometimes, as he will occasionally miss out over the plate; a problem he can get away with in the DSL, but not as he moves up. Luis' inexperience is evident when fielding his position and holding runners. He struggles to maintain both his velocity and command from the stretch, and must change that soon as he is likely to allow more base runners once coming stateside. Marte has the overall potential to become a legitimate starting pitching prospect, but without significant progress on his secondary offerings, his future likely involves the back end of a bullpen.
Performance Level Team W-L ERA G GS SV SO BB IP AVG R
During his brief professional career, Marte has remained healthy without a hint of soreness or fatigue. An increased workload in the states at a later time, will be something to watch closely.
Expect Marte to make his stateside debut in June 2007 with the GCL Tigers. After such a dominating performance in his first taste of DSL competition, Marte will have lofty expectations to fulfill. He has the potential to be effective immediately, in much the same fashion as fellow DSL graduates Alfredo Figaro and Eleazar Aponte. If Luis can maintain his ability to strike batters out and generate groundballs, he should have little trouble adjusting to the stiffer competition of the GCL. I expect Marte's fastball to help him breeze through the rookie level GCL, and he may get a taste of Oneonta or possibly Lakeland for a spot start by the end of the '07 campaign.
Mark Anderson covers the Tigers' minor league system and all of minor league baseball for TigsTown.com. He can be reached at Mark@TigsTown.com.