EDISON LANTIGUA, CORNER OUTFIELDER
|Born: January 9, 1997
Signed: Int’l Free Agent, 2013, Pittsburgh Pirates
How Acquired: International Free Agent
Country: Dominican Republic
WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE
|Along with Adrian Valerio, Lantigua was the Pirates’ most prominent international signing in 2013. He’s a line drive hitter who may eventually hit for power. He appears to be strictly a corner outfielder, as his speed and arm are only average.
Lantigua had a good debut, hitting for average and gap power with a good walk rate. On the negative side, he struck out better than once every five ABs. He struggled against LHPs, with a .696 OPS compared to .856 against RHPs, but the sample size was only 42 plate appearances. Lantigua missed some games off and on, including ten days at the beginning of August. He played only in left field.
Lantigua had a disappointing season. He missed most of the first month due to a hand injury and played only semi-regularly in July. When he played, he struggled to hit, with poor walk and strikeout numbers. He did show some improvement in August, hitting 246/324/393 after posting a dismal 143/143/196 line in July. It’s possible the hand injury had an impact on his hitting, both before and after he missed time. He played left field.
The Pirates sent Lantigua back to the GCL, which in itself probably wasn’t a good sign. He had a decent, but not especially good, season, with a high K rate for a player who doesn’t have much over-the-fence power. He played exclusively in right.
At Bristol, Lantigua finally started to step forward with the bat, showing good power for the first time. He even did well as a base stealer. Striking out in over a third of his ABs isn’t a good indicator, though. He had a large platoon split, with a .939 OPS against RHPs and .721 against LHPs, although the latter in particular was a very small sample size. The Pirates played him mostly in left, with a little time in right.
Because of the number of college and prep outfielders the Pirates drafted in 2017, the organization was facing a crunch for playing time in the outfield. That may have impacted Lantigua, who spent 2018 at Morgantown rather than West Virginia. He had a good season, with a slash line that was well above the league averages. Lantigua even hit for the cycle near the end of the season. He had trouble with LHPs, putting up an .820 OPS against RHPs and .672 against RHPs. The high K rate remained a concern. He split his time between left, right and DH.
Lantigua has hit well the last two years and was only a little old for the levels he was at. The Pirates nevertheless don’t seem inclined to push him. He’s been eligible for the Rule 5 draft since 2017. The Pirates likely will send him to Greensboro in 2019.
|2019: Minor League Contract|
|Signing Bonus: $275,000
MiLB Debut: 2014
MLB Debut: N/A
MiLB FA Eligible: 2020
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: 2017
Added to 40-Man: N/A
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
|July 3, 2013: Signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as an international free agent.