Despite being left off the Arizona Diamondbacks’ 60-man roster for summer camp, Bahamian professional baseball player Kristian Robinson is regarded as one of those rare talents who could explode in the future.
The 6’3” 19-year-old outfielder hit .282 with 14 home-runs and 51 RBIs (runs batted in) between two teams in the minor league system a year ago, and is the number one prospect of the Diamondbacks. He also had a .514 slugging percentage. It came as a bit of a surprise when Robinson wasn’t invited to be a part of the Diamondbacks’ 60-man player pool for summer camp, particularly since he stayed in Scottsdale, Arizona, working out at the D-backs’ spring training facility after the pandemic struck.
For a gifted player such as Robinson, who doesn’t turn 20 until December, the sky is the limit. He is listed as the number 43 prospect in all of Major League Baseball (MLB) and is the number 11 outfielder.
For Robinson, the season is over, given the cancelation of the minor league seasons due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The deadly new coronavirus halted sports worldwide for a three-month period before a handful of leagues and sporting organizations resumed play in recent weeks, albeit while adhering to strict health and safety guidelines.
In his two seasons in the minors, Robinson has shown an ability to hit for average and power, and make plays defensively. He was a Class-A Short Season all-star a year ago, ranking second in the Northwest League in both home-runs (nine) and OPS (on-base plus slugging) at .966, fifth in average at .321 and was tied for sixth in stolen bases with 10 through 41 games. Defensively, he had four outfield assists while splitting time between center and right.
Robinson’s average dropped off a bit after being assigned to the Kane County Cougars in Class A last season, but his power numbers remained pretty much the same as he connected on five more home-runs in just 25 games. He has a good eye for the ball and when he meets the ball out front and makes good contact, it goes a long way.
Robinson signed with Arizona for $2.5 million in 2017 and has blossomed in his two years in the minors.
Many expect Robinson to be called up to the majors within the next two years, but the D-backs’ system is loaded with talent. However, if he keeps producing and putting up impressive numbers, his time in the minors could be short-lived. Outfielders Alek Thomas and Corbin Carroll, catcher Daulton Varsho and shortstop Geroldo Perdomo were all added to the Diamondbacks’ 60-man player pool and all four rank inside MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 Prospects List. Robinson is listed ahead of all of them.
The Bahamian outfielder has shown power to all fields, is already producing triple-digit exit velocities and is expected to make immediate impact whenever he is called up to the majors.
At the plate, he is regarded as a patient batter who sits back and waits on his pitch. He drew 31 walks a year ago and 27 the year before while splitting time between two teams in rookie league baseball. He has deceptive speed as well for a man his size, stealing 17 bases a year ago and 12 the season prior.
Whilst he might be taking this season off because of the pandemic, the Bahamian outfielder is expected to continue to blossom.