Jairo Beras Scouting Report: Jairo Beras ranked #12 on the LSB Community Prospect Rankings.
In the days leading up to Opening Day, I'm going to offer write-ups on the 31 players who made the Rangers' LSB Community Prospect Rankings Top 31. I've done this the last couple of years, and I don't want to re-invent the wheel, so some of this will be a repeat of what I've written before, particularly regarding draft history or performance pre-2013. Also, this is not based on my personal observations -- I'm not a scout, and haven't seen most of these guys. I'm just aggregating the numbers and what others say about these players.
So, with that out of the way, let's take a look at Jairo Beras...
Jairo Beras is a 19 year old (we think) righthanded hitting outfielder from the Dominican Republic. Listed at 6'5", 178 lbs., Beras made headlines in February, 2012, when word came out that he had signed with the Texas Rangers for a $4.5 million bonus. This was controversial because Beras had previously represented that he was born in 1995, which would have meant he wasn't eligible to sign until July 2, 2012 -- when the new $2.9 million spending caps on international talent were being put into place for that signing period. But because Beras was now saying he was born in 1994, rather than 1995, he could be signed before then, and under the old, uncapped rules. MLB ultimately suspended Beras for one year, but allowed the signing to stand. You can read about the whole saga here.
Beras made his pro debut with the Rangers' complex league team in 2013, though he was limited to just 70 plate appearances, with his season ending due to a broken hamate bone in his left hand. Beras put up a .250/.314/.438 line in those 70 plate appearances.
Beras is similar to Nomar Mazara in that the scouting report on him is that he has big-time power, a plus arm, and not much else in the way of tools. He's very raw, and has a long ways to go in terms of his approach at the plate and being able to handle live pitching, rather than batting practice, for his power potential to be realized.
I'm not sure where Beras will be to start the 2014 season. He's fallen off the radar somewhat, between his inability to log many at bats and the excitement over the other high-ceiling young hitters in the system. The Rangers could start him in the Arizona League, at short-season A Spokane, or at low-A Hickory, and none of those assignments would surprise me, though I'd guess Spokane is most likely.
What sort of ceiling does Beras have? Like a lot of the Rangers' highly regarded prospects, he’s miles away. However, the comp that has been put on him, in terms of his ceiling, is Juan Gonzalez, so that is something you can dream on if you're so inclined.