Physical Description: Strong,
athletic build. Looks all of his listed 6-foot-4, 225 pounds.
Minimal remaining projection. Strong upper body and core. Well
proportioned, looks the part.
a mechanical change after signing with the Red Sox, returning to
his stance and pre-pitch setup from 2015 when he excelled in the
Cape Cod League. Starts slightly open with his hands high and up
by his shoulder. Utilizes a leg lift timing device. Brings leg
up and down quickly, ending up in a good hitting position. Has
solid separation in his swing, and when he lands and transfers
his weight, he brings his hips through quickly with a stiff
front leg, allowing for significant torque. Above-average bat
speed. Swings on a slightly uphill plane. Gets good extension
and is comfortable getting his arms out and driving the ball to
all fields. Approach has improved significantly in the minors,
but will always have swing-and-miss in his game. Cut down
significantly on strikeouts in 2019 to bring them to a
manageable level, a very important development point for him.
Aggressive; likes to attack the ball. Will get caught out in
front too often against breaking balls, especially when behind
in the count. Also has some trouble with velocity in on the
hands. Bat will be tested by more advanced pitching and will
need to make the necessary adjustments to keep these weaknesses
from being exploited. If he can continue to keep strikeouts at a
manageable level, has a chance to be a below-average hitter,
capable of hitting in the .235 to .245 range.
Power: Plus-plus raw power.
Among bats with best power potential in the system. Will put on
a show in batting practice and has shown the ability to drive
the ball out of the park to all fields with ease. Has shown the
ability to actualize into in-game power when he keeps strikeouts at
a manageable level. Natural lift in swing. Drives the ball with
backspin. Ball jumps and carries off his bat. How much power
actualizes will depend on hit tool, but has the ability to hit
30-plus home runs a year if he can make enough contact.
Run: Well below-average speed, but not a true
base clogger. Takes some time to get going, but able to go from
first to third on a single when on the move.
Hands work well and footwork is usually reliable. A little stiff
and has some trouble getting down on ground balls when charging
the ball. Doesn't have great range, but makes up for that
somewhat with his length, allowing him to cover more ground than
his feet would normally allow. Has made great strides since he
joined the Red Sox at third
base. Regressed somewhat at third base in 2019 and projects as
an average defender there. Also has seen significant time at
first base at higher levels, in large part due to presence of
Rafael Devers at third base in Boston.
Arm: Plus arm strength. Touched the
mid-90s off the mound in college. Plenty of arm for third base,
able to make all the throws including balls fielded on the foul
line. Has regressed slightly but still fine for third base.
Career Notes: Starred as a two-way
player at Arizona, including a standout performance in the 2016
College World Series as a starting pitcher in which he carried
the Wildcats to a runner-up finish. Has stated that he much
prefers to hit and play third base, and credited no longer
having to pitch for part of his breakout debut with Lowell in
2016. Participated in 2016 Fall Instructional League. Missed a
significant portion of the 2017 season due to a broken hamate
bone. Invited to MLB spring training in 2019. Made MLB debut on
August 30, 2020 and served as Red Sox' primary first baseman for
the season's final month. Became fifth player in MLB history to
homer six times in his first 10 games, but also struck out at a
42 percent clip. Was prone to extreme hot and cold streaks of
four to six games. Entered 2021 season as Boston's primary first
baseman and a top 100 prospect.
Summation: Projects as a valuable role player on a
contending team. Ultimate future potential depends on how his
hit tool develops. Has the ceiling of an everyday regular with
average defense who hits 30-plus home runs in his best seasons
if he proves he can make enough contact against advanced
pitching. If his hit tool doesn't progress he could struggle to
make enough contact and become more of an up-and-down player.
2019 improvements helped to address these concerns, but needs to
show those are real and not just a one-year aberration. He has
worked hard cut down his strikeout rate as he has moved up the
system and has improved considerably since he joined the
organization as someone who came with more risk than a normal
college performer. Tweaked swing mechanics and sole focus on
hitting - no longer having to pitch - have helped. Has the
potential for two plus-to-better tools in power and arm.
Unlikely to ever hit for a high average and will always have a
lot of swing-and-miss in his game, but teams will be able to
live with that given his power potential.
Return to past hitting mechanics fueling Dalbec
Bobby Dalbec Video by SoxProspects (9.15.16)
Notes from the Field
Spring Training Video of Bobby Dalbec 1 (3.22.19)
Spring Training Video of Bobby Dalbec 2 (3.22.19)
Spring Training Video of Bobby Dalbec 3 (3.22.19)
State of the System: Corner Infielders (4.22.20)