Chicago Cubs prospects: Reginald Preciado looking to redeem 2022
Last season was rough for Chicago Cubs infield prospect Reginald Preciado. The 19-year-old switch-hitter from Panama had a rough year at the plate and dealt with a knee injury that kept him out from mid-June through August. Preciado was MLB Pipeline's 11th-ranked Cubs prospect in 2021 and has since fallen out of the current top 30.
When Preciado did play in 2022, he slashed .201/.268/.302 with a .570 OPS and two home runs in 56 games between low-A Myrtle Beach and the Arizona Complex League. Most of his time was with the Pelicans (46 games), he played in the ACL after coming back from the knee injury. The fact of the matter was, he struggled at the plate the entire year. He was hitting just .212 through June 12th, the last game he played before missing the next two months.
2023 is a new year for Preciado. Despite everything that happened in 2022, one cannot give up hope that Preciado can be anything. He's still only 19 and was a notable prospect not too long ago, he was even ranked in the top 100 by Baseball Prospectus going into 2022. It's also worth noting he was signed out of Panama by the Padres in 2019 for $13 million, which according to MLB Pipeline was the most committed to any international prospect from Panama. Their scouting report even made comparisons to Corey Seager.
His performance in 2021 showed off a lot of promise, as he slashed .333/.383/.511 in 34 ACL games. He hit over .300 from both sides of the plate but slugged better from the right side. His abilities as an 18-year-old were impressive, but still very raw. It was his first professional season. It was always going to take a lot of work and time to develop and advance his skills. Ideally, he builds more strength and bat speed to generate some more pop, again the potential is there, while finding that consistency.
Do not forget about Preciado in 2023. If he bounces back and plays to his potential, or at least shows significant strides, he will be worth following.