As a weekly reminder of who's doing good things down in the minors, Giant Potential will name a "Prospect of the Week" every Thursday afternoon, along with a few honorable mentions, highlighting the best of San Francisco Giants hopefuls. It's week seven, and it's always nice when the featured player is in the middle of slump-busting. This edition is just that, as one San Jose Giants outfielder has left April behind him and is surging into summer with confidence at the plate. It's switch-hitting, corner outfielder Gio Brusa.
OF, Gio Brusa
- Age: 23
- Hometown: Lodi, Calif.
- Height/Weight: 6'3", 235 lbs
- Drafted: 2016, 6th round
- School: University of the Pacific
- Key Stats: 9 H, 4 HR, .846 SLG
Once deep into an early-season slump, slashing .158/.294/.368 with a 36.8 percent strikeout rate, Brusa seems to have found his stroke. Since April 26, when Brusa's batting average dropped to below .160, the switch-hitter from Lodi, Calif. owns an OPS of .848 and is striking out eight percent less often. Ten of his 27 hits in that span have gone for extra bases, including five four-baggers.
Even more recently, say just this past week, Brusa hit four of those five aforementioned home runs, and added a double for good measure. He still struck out eight times in 27 plate appearances, giving him a 29.6 K% over the stretch, but that's basically par for his course. The most crucial thing is that when Brusa has put the ball in play of late, they've not only dropped in for hits, but have been of the slugging variety. He owns a .224 isolated slugging percentage in the month of May.
In a longer Daily Prospect Recap on May 16, I wrote in detail about Gio Brusa and his switch-hitting abilities. Noted were his struggles batting right-handed against lefties. Since that post, he has just four plate appearances against left-handers, which is likely part of the issue with Brusa finding a consistent groove from the right side. But in those four trips to the plate, he recorded two hits — a double and a home run.
*Unfortunately, there are no highlights of Brusa's four bombs from this past week. So here's footage I shot back in March during spring training. You can get a look at both sides of the switch-hitter, including a right-handed, opposite-field double off the wall, which is the last swing in the clip.
- OF Bryan Reynolds: 12 H, 4 XBH, .444 AVG
- OF Heath Quinn: 9 H, 3 2B, 2 BB, 11.1 K%
- SS Ryan Howard: 13 H, 2 2B, 2 BB, 10.0 K%
- INF Miguel Gomez: 9 H, 2 2B, .409 AVG, 13.0 K%
- OF Austin Slater: 8 H, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 BB
- RHP Kyle Crick: 3 G, 3.1 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 8 K
— For the latest on #SFGiants minor leaguers, follow @Giant_Potential on Twitter