Nathaniel Lowe
23-Year-Old First Baseman1B
Tampa Bay Rays AAA
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Prior to 2018, Lowe’s claim to fame was being the older brother of Josh Lowe, the Rays’ selection with the No. 13 overall pick in 2016. Nathaniel was less heralded, transferring from Mercer to St. Johns River State College to Mississippi State before Tampa selected him in the 13th round in 2016. As an older first baseman with minimal pedigree, he wasn’t considered much of a prospect until he exploded in his third pro season. Lowe was the best hitter in the Florida State League (191 wRC+), got promoted to Double-A, was the best hitter in the Southern League (193 wRC+), and finally got challenged after a promotion to Triple-A. His walk rate dipped (15.6% to 7.3%), his strikeout rate spiked (13.3% to 24.5%) and his pull rate jumped by 11%. If he can recapture the patient, all-fields, flyball-oriented approach he showed at Double-A, Lowe will look the part of a big-league cleanup hitter. If not, there is some Quadruple-A hitter risk. Read Past Outlooks
Moves up to Triple-A
1BTampa Bay Rays  AAA
August 8, 2018
Lowe was promoted to Triple-A Durham on Wednesday.
ANALYSIS
A 13th-round pick in 2016, Lowe had certainly been productive in the lower levels of the minors in 2016 and 2017, but this year has unquestionably been his coming out party. He earned the promotion to the highest level of the minors after going 13-for-28 (.464) with a pair of home runs, nine walks and three strikeouts over his last eight games for Double-A Montgomery. He has logged a 190 wRC+ at High-A, a 191 wRC+ at Double-A and 23 home runs over 101 games across the two levels. His batting averages on balls in play at those two levels were high, but not so high that we should write off the production. He also has a 63:60 K:BB this season, and had more walks (35) than strikeouts (30) at Double-A. Another promising element of Lowe's production is his spray chart -- he hit exactly the same amount (34.2 percent) of balls to the pull side as to the opposite field at Double-A, which suggests MLB teams won't be able to neutralize him via the shift. The big knocks on Lowe are his age (23), position (first base) and lack of pedigree. If he carries over this dominance against Triple-A pitching, we will likely find out how his tools play at the highest level sometime next summer.
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