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Nestor Bautista: Marlin on the Rise

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Bautista should spend next season with the Jupiter Hammerheads.

For the 2016-17 offseason, we counted down the Top 100 all-time Marlins. This offseason, we will instead cast our eyes ahead. I’ll be outlining the Top 100 Marlins prospects, as chosen by you on the listing.

Coming in at number 95 on the list is 6’3”, 200 lb. left-handed pitcher Nestor Bautista. Born on May 13th, 1992, the New York City native was chosen by the Marlin in the 32nd round of the 2014 MLB Amateur Draft, with the 947th overall selection.

Bautista was a four-year player with Ball State through college, posting a 4-13 record with an 8.05 ERA. In his first three seasons, he didn’t register an ERA lower than 9.11, but his senior campaign would see him go 3-1 with a 3.55 ERA and 25 whiffs in 25.1 innings.

Bautista joined the GCL Marlins after his selection, and got into his first game on June 24th, 2014. His best showing at the rookie level was on July 30th, when he struck out three and allowed just one hit in a four-inning start of an eventual 5-0 Marlins win against the GCL Nationals.

Bautista got into 14 games with the Batavia Muckdogs in 2015, and pitched less than three innings on only one occasion despite starting only three times. He earned a .307/.365/.411 slash line with a sky-high .360 BAbip. He struck out 41 in 55 innings, but racked up a 1.673 WHIP and surrendered 71 hits. He did end up 4-3 with a 3.27 ERA, and walked only 21 batters for a respectable 3.5 BB/9 rate.

2016 was mostly a wash for Bautista, who missed the majority of the season with a left Latissimus Dorsi Strain. He went 0-2 over seven relief appearances with the Greensboro Grasshoppers, with a 6.48 ERA and a 1.56 WHIP.

This past season, Bautista started out with the Muckdogs in June, and appeared in five games for a 1-1 record and a 6.75 ERA, along with a 1.95 WHIP. Despite that, he was called up to the Grasshoppers on Independence Day.

Miami’s confidence was rewarded when Bautista pitched to a 1.62 ERA and a tiny little 1.02 WHIP over 16.2 innings. He went 1-2 and struck out 20 batters to only two walks. He should end up with the Jupiter Hammerheads to start the 2018 season, but we will have to wait and see.