Blake Sabol, OF/C
DOB: 1/7/1998
ACQUIRED: Traded from the Cincinnati Reds for cash and a PTBNL, Dec. 2022 (after Reds took him in the Rule 5 draft from the Pittsburgh Pirates)
ORIGINALLY DRAFTED: 2019, 7th Round (By Pittsburgh)

See Full Stats Here

GiantFutures 2023 Ranks: #31 Overall, #4 Corner Outfielder

2022 Performance: Blake Sabol started the season in Double-A, putting together a strong season by hitting .281/.347/.486 with 23 doubles, five triples, and 14 home runs over 98 games and earned a promotion at the end of August to Triple-A Indianapolis.  Sabol did even better there in 25 games, batting .296/.426/.543 with three doubles, a triple, and five home runs.  Sabol would also play in the Arizona Fall League, where he hit .234/.346/.340.

Sabol had first began catching in 2021, when he played 28 games at the position, and increased that to 66 games at catcher in 2022, with 21 games at left field and 34 games at DH.  Sabol had a .990 fielding percentage at catcher in 2022, but caught only 9 would-be basestealers out of 66 (13.6%)

Strengths and Weaknesses: Sabol is an above average all-around hitter from the left side, with the ability to hit for contact and for double-digit power, and is a patient hitter at the plate, drawing walks and hunting for pitches he can hit.  He’s a fringy-average runner, which isn’t a surprise for a catcher.

Defensively, he’s a fringy defender in left field, with a barely average arm and range.

2023 Outlook: Rule 5 picks and the Giants have not had great histories.  While Sabol was technically not picked by the Giants, he’s still under those rules, so Sabol will start with the big league team.  How well he plays at catcher and collects hits will determine whether or not the Giants end up returning him to Pittsburgh.

Future Profile: The Giants picked up Blake Sabol with the hopes that he will be able to play catcher and pick up time there, alongside Joey Bart as a left-handed partial platoon.  However, his ability to stay at catcher is a big question.  If he can, he’d be a solid left-handed hitting catcher that teams would value.  Otherwise, he’d end up a light-hitting left fielder.