It’s always a good idea to play well right before the draft. But the Rays seem to think that Chad Nacapoy didn’t just get hot in 2012 but actually made a breakthrough.
Nacapoy, just 5’7″ and 220 pounds, was the Rays’ second pick in the draft out of Cal State Los Angeles. For the CSULA Golden Eagles, Nacapoy missed quite a bit of time with a hand injury but when healthy, he hit extremely well, posting a .361/.409/.525 line with 4 doubles, 2 homers, and 8 RBI in 61 at-bats. He stood out even more defensively, where he didn’t make a single error and threw out 36.1% of attempted basestealers. Nacapoy has a solid line drive swing with a little power- he slammed 8 homers in 2011- although his plate discipline isn’t so good. Nacapoy will need to improve that moving forward. Defensively, Nacapoy has a strong arm but needs some work on his receiving ability defensively. But he is comfortable at the catcher position and should almost definitely remain there moving forward.
Nacapoy’s upside is a backup catcher who can hit for a halfway-decent average with a little pop while playing good defense and holding down the running game. Everything was working for him in 2012 and he showed some nice ability, and the Rays hope he can build on that. If the Rays can get a backup catcher in the 38th round, they’ll be more than satisfied.