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Two SF Giants infield prospects win minor league Gold Gloves

By Evan Webeck

The Giants’ putrid defense prevented them from reaching the playoffs last season, but help is on the way.

Two of San Francisco’s prospects were awarded minor league Gold Gloves on Tuesday, including third baseman Casey Schmitt, who reached Triple-A last year and could be their best long-term option at the hot corner as soon as next season.

In addition to Schmitt, 23, San Francisco’s 2020 first round pick, catcher Patrick Bailey, also took home a Gold Glove. Minor leaguers at every level are eligible for the award, with a single winner at each position (three outfielders). The Giants were the only team with multiple representatives among the nine winners.

Between his glove and a breakout with his bat, Schmitt is challenging 21-year-old shortstop Marco Luciano and Luis Matos, a 20-year-old center fielder, for the title of the Giants’ top position prospect. Matos was recently named the Arizona Fall League’s top defensive player.

Schmitt’s glove generates rave reviews from every scout that’s seen him. The defensive comps at the hot corner range from Nolan Arenado, the 10-time reigning NL Gold Glove winner at third base, to Matt Chapman, a three-time winner himself.

Many in the organization hope Tuesday’s award will be the first of many Gold Glove trophies in his collection.

“He’s on another level defensively,” farm director Kyle Haines said in an interview this past August. “He has a chance to be a really special defensive player at third base. … He’s so good with his hands. His feet and his hands, combined. It gives you glimpses of what the great ones do.”

Schmitt played at three levels last year, advancing all the way to Triple-A Sacramento, where he got in four games at the end of the season. A second-round draft pick in 2020, Schmitt hit .293 and slugged 21 homers, nearly three times his total from his first professional season (eight).

When Luciano was injured last season, Schmitt slid over for a brief cameo at shortstop, but the organization envisions him as a third baseman, where he has the potential to be elite defensively. No doubt about his arm: he also served as the closer on his college team at San Diego State.

Source: Paradise Post