Victor Bericoto, 1B/OF
DOB: December 3, 2011
BATS: R / THROWS: R
ACQUIRED: International Signing, July 2 2018
LAST LEVEL: Rookie
GiantFutures Ranks: #3 First Base
Performance: Bericoto’s 2019 performance was a bit obscured by his teammate Luis Matos in the Dominican Summer League, but he had a strong year, slashing .344/.472/.485 in the Dominican before hitting .273 in five games in Arizona. What stood out the most was Bericoto’s patience at the plate, walking 53 times in 60 games in the DSL, and having the second-highest OBP in the league at .472. He had almost as many walks as strikeouts there (56). He didn’t walk at all in the Arizona League, but that was just five games.
Still, Bericoto’s overall performance was great. Five home runs doesn’t look like a lot, but it was tied for 40th in the league, which was led by 11 home runs. The 15 doubles was tied for 14th in the league. The ten steals were not a notable number in the league, but showed a good amount of speed for a player who spent the majority of time playing first base.
Strengths and Weaknesses: Bericoto’s approach was a standout tool in the Dominican League, showing a polish that stood out above his peers, and he pairs that with a swing that contains a lot of power. That led to him mashing balls for all sorts of bases all over the DSL. It’s hard to put a lot of stock into the numbers coming out of the Dominican, but it’s also hard not to be optimistic.
Bericoto also is a good athlete, as his 13 steals over the total of the season showed, which goes into his double positioning.
Defense right now is one of his weaknesses. He played 18 games in the outfield in the Dominican, and 35 at first base between the two levels. All five games he played in Arizona were at first. Reports are he needs to work on his outfield defense, and will probably be limited to left. But as a right-handed player, he’s not ideal for first, either.
2021 Outlook: Extended Spring Training is Bericoto’s likely starting point, and probably the run in the Arizona League that he should have had in 2020. Bericoto’s defense is something he’ll still need to work on, and he’ll be challenged in the American leagues. If he continues to impress, he could find himself in San Jose quickly.
Future Profile: Bericoto’s future is not easy to project. He clearly has offensive talent to have roles open for him, but the defense will be a question. First base isn’t a perfect fit for him, but being an outfielder at Oracle Park may not be the best fit either. He’s too athletic to be seen as a future DH, but that is a possibility for him one day as well. Of course, his bat can’t be taken for granted, but if he continues to outperform expectations, a spot will be found for him.