Noelvi Marte and Hideo Nomo
Noelvi Marte: 19-year-old shortstop. Just outside the top 100, likely at 101 in MLB.com prospect rankings for 2021.
Hideo Nomo: 12 years, One-time All-Star, Finished fourth in Cy Young voting twice, 1976.1 Innings, 1918 K’s, 4.24 ERA, 4.23 FIP, 1.354 WHIP, 21.8 WAR
Nomo burst onto the scene in 1995, not just winning ROY, but also making the All-Star game and finishing 4th in Cy Young voting. No argument there, as Greg Maddux put together one of the best seasons you will ever see from a player in 1995.
Nomo followed it up with an equally valuable second season, posting 4.7 WAR in each of them, as well as 4th in Cy Young voting once again. That would make up about half of his career total. He still put together a solid career, but the numbers are a bit skewed from those first two seasons.
Marte is an incredibly exciting young player in the Mariners organization and has slowly been climbing the prospect ladder. Many thought that he was going to break into the top 100 this year, but both the Mariners and MLB shortstop prospects are packed with top prospects.
He was a top ten international prospect when he signed in 2018, and the Mariners dished out over $1.5 million to the then 17-year-old. Between 50-60 everywhere for his tools, Marte has an impressive toolset. Good power and the ability to be a plus-runner leads to a comparison of, and I’ll say this quietly… Hanley Ramirez.
Don’t forget, Marlins Hanley was one of the most feared players in baseball. Over a five-year stretch, he averaged .313/.385/.521, with 40 doubles, 25 HR, 39 SB, 112 R, and 78 RBI. You can hope for numbers like that, but it isn’t realistic.
Instead, I think we should compare him more to Jason Kipnis. Early Kipnis, that is. During his first six years, he averaged .272/.345/.423, with 13 HR, 19 SB, 29 2B, 72 R, and 59 RBI. Kipnis wasn’t a great defender, you could argue he wasn’t even a good one, but the offensive numbers would be ones to be happy with.
Here’s the prediction for Marte. He puts together similar numbers to those by Kipnis, but for around 10-12 years instead of six. He plays slightly above-average defense during that time, possibly moving around the infield a bit depending on who the team has around him. He ends up having a career very similar to Edgar Renteria, who finished with a career 32.4 WAR during his 16-year career.