SAN DIEGO — When he was introduced at AT&T Park last month, Heliot Ramos said he hoped to return in three years. The 17-year-old’s statement doesn’t look as far-fetched two weeks into his professional career.
Ramos, the organization’s first-round pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, and Jacob Gonzalez, the second-rounder, have played two weeks in the Arizona Rookie League. Both have gotten off to scorching starts.
Ramos, a center fielder, has played 10 games as a leadoff hitter. He’s batting .425 with a .500 on-base percentage and .850 slugging percentage in 40 at-bats, with two homers, three triples and five doubles. He’s a perfect 4-for-4 on the bases. It’s very early, but the numbers back up the Giants’ belief that Ramos can be a five-tool player.
Ramos and Gonzalez were both known for their power at the time of the draft, and Gonzalez — the son of Luis Gonzalez — has shown it in the form of doubles. He has six in 39 at-bats, along with a triple. Gonzalez, 19, has five walks and four strikeouts. Overall, the third baseman has a .462/.563/.667 slash line.
Ramos ranks second in the Arizona Rookie league in OPS and Gonzalez is sixth. Andy Skeels, the club’s coordinator of minor league hitting, was at AT&T Park workouts for both players and he traveled to Scottsdale last month to help the rookies get settled in. Earlier this week in San Jose, I asked him about the two teenagers.
“It’s been fun. (You see) power and athleticism,” Skeels said. “Obviously Jacob Gonzalez has good bloodlines. Ramos (is) a good athlete. I think that’s one of the things that’s encouraging. They’re both very athletic and they’ve got power. That’s certainly something we’re trying to develop a little more and it obviously takes a while. But they’re off to a great start, and we’re encouraged by what we’ve seen.”