First things first. Stephen Piscotty will never be confused with Mike Trout, Mickey Mantle, Joe DiMaggio, or Willie Mays. However, what we do have is a player who not only has an exquisite ability to get on base, but with 210 lbs. packed on to a 6'3" frame, room for power to develop with an organization that has quite a history of developing hitters.
Signed out of Stanford as a 1st round (supplemental) pick of the St. Louis Cardinals, Piscotty has advanced rather rapidly since signing. Debuting in 2012, Piscotty put up a .295/.376/.448 triple slash as a somewhat old 21 year old in the notorious pitcher friendly Midwest League. As a college draftee, one would've expected him to post that kind of line after a stellar All America career at Stanford.
But the thing that somehow sticks in my mind is Piscotty's 2013 season. Debuting at the Hi-A Palm Beach club, he increased his slugging percentage while still maintaining an above average OBP to the tune of a 63 game triple slash of .292/.348/.477 and being promoted midseason to AA. The promotion, however, did not bring the struggle one would have thought. The excellent OBP and now emerging power Piscotty showed at Hi A continued to build, as he actually increased his OBP to a very nice .364 clip against a league average OBP of .320.
There are very difficult things left to assess when trying to determine Piscotty's ceiling and therefore his place in the prospect realm. One, his ability to barrel balls and drive them for power will determine just how valuable he is. Secondarily, will he be able to turn the Stanford inside out swing technique and implement a swing based on hitting for power due to the positional switch that places more of an emphasis on the bat.
Assessment of Tools:
Hit for Power:3/5
Peak Year Projection: .281/.360/.470
Possible Outcomes: Best case Outcome is a Hunter Pence without the stolen bases. Most likely outcome would be Daniel Nava or a Martin Prado type. Stretch Possibility: Matt Holliday with less power.