Braves prospect compared to Simmons, Ozhaino Albies, to play in Futures Game
One of the Atlanta Braves top minor-league prospects, shortstop Ozhaino Albies, is slated to participate in the 2015 MLB Futures Game, giving Braves fans a glimpse at the talented infielder who is slated to be the team’s next Curaçaoan star.
Albies, who hails from Curaçao like Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons, is only 18 years old and is one of the smallest top prospects at 5-foot-9, 150 pounds, but the Braves speak very highly of his potential and think he’s one of the best in their organization.
"Top five for sure, and I would say top three," Braves assistant manager John Coppolella told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Thursday of how he ranks Albies.
Utility man Joey Terdoslavich, who has contributed at the major-league level for the Braves this season, was thoroughly impressed with Albies while playing alongside him in spring training.
"He plays bigger than [his physical stature]," Terdoslavich said. "He’s fast, he’s strong, he’s got good instincts. Great teammate. I talked to him in spring a bunch too, he was asking a bunch of questions. He’s got a lot of talent, and he’s a lot stronger than he looks. He swings it really well from both sides of the plate, uses the whole field."
Albies is currently in Single-A for the Braves, where he’s hitting .322/.376/.407 with 26 RBI, 13 doubles, five triples, and 22 stolen bases in 66 games.
He’s listed as the No. 89 prospect in MLB and the No. 5 prospect in the Braves’ organization by MLB.com.
His national and positional connection to Simmons make comparisons between the two unavoidable.
"Good defender, always in the right place," Terdoslavich lauded. "I don’t know if it’s just how they teach you in Curaçao, but he’s always in the right place at the right time. And never gives up on any plays, on anything. Reminds me a lot of a smaller version of Simmons – and on the defensive side. Just his instincts. So I think he’s going to be a real good player."
The 2015 MLB Futures Game will be played Monday, July 13 at 3 p.m. ET at Cincinnati’s Great American Ballpark.