Where Marco Luciano will start 2023 after being optioned by SF Giants

Where Marco Luciano will start 2023 after being optioned by SF Giants

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Around this time two years ago, Marco Luciano declared that he would be in the majors by 2022.

After an injury-riddled season, that didn’t come to fruition, and it came as no surprise Saturday when Luciano, 21, was optioned to the minors.

Luciano is likely destined for Double-A Richmond, the next level up from where he ended last season.

The Giants typically move their position player prospects through the system more slowly than their pitchers, but Luciano could move quicker than most, given he has more pedigree than anyone else in the organization. Since signing out of the Dominican Republic for a $2.6 million bonus in 2018, Luciano’s size, strength and hitting ability quickly established himself as one of the most intriguing prospects in the game. From 2019-2022, Baseball America rated him among the top 20 prospects in baseball, with nobody higher in the Giants’ system.

However, Luciano’s stock began to drop last season, when a lower back injury limited him to 65 games. It further raised concerns when Luciano’s back flared up again in winter ball, forcing him off the Dominican League’s Estrellas Orientales after only five games.

Since arriving to camp this spring, Luciano has received nothing but rave reviews from Giants coaches. Although his back limited his workload to start, Luciano showed up more muscular than ever and, according to manager Gabe Kapler, with his best mindset.

“He’s taken some of the biggest steps forward of anybody in camp,” Kapler said last week. “He’s in a great frame of mind and he is enjoying camp in a way that I have not seen him in the past. He’s very engaged, smiling a ton, like really coming into his own. That’s super exciting for the organization.”

Luciano was cleared to resume all baseball activities last week, and he was seen taking ground balls at short and hitting in the cage.

He has not appeared in Cactus League game, though this move doesn’t necessarily preclude him from seeing live action later this spring. The Giants routinely bus players over from minor-league camp to take over in the later innings.


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