Manuel Margot Gomez
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 11", Weight 170 lb.
Outfielder Manuel Margot was signed by Boston Red Sox scouts Manny Nanita and Craig Shipley as a 17-year-old before the 2012 season. He played his first season that year with the DSL Red Sox, hitting .285/.382/.423 in 68 games, scoring 49 runs and driving in 45. In 2013, he moved to the United States, playing for the Lowell Spinners where he hit .270 in 49 games. In 2014, he played 115 games, hitting .293/.356/.462 between the Greenville Drive of the South Atlantic League and the Salem Red Sox of the Carolina League, with 42 steals, 25 doubles and 12 homers.
He was back with Salem at the start of 2015, then after 46 games was promoted to the Portland Sea Dogs of the Eastern League. Altogether, he hit .276/.324/.419 in 110 games, scoring 73 runs and driving in 50. In the 2015 Futures Game, he started in center field for the World team and hit 8th. He struck out against Amir Garrett in the 3rd. Facing Mark Appel in the 5th, he lined out to SS J.P. Crawford. Socrates Brito replaced him in center.
On November 13, 2015, he was one of four prospects traded to the San Diego Padres, along with SS Javy Guerra, IF Carlos Asuaje and P Logan Allen, in return for closer Craig Kimbrel. Ironically, he made his major league debut for the Padres on September 21, 2016, the same day as Asuaje; a third Padres prospect, OF Hunter Renfroe also debuted in that game.
Margot hit his first two major league homers in the same game, on April 7, 2017 against the San Francisco Giants in a 7-6 win. He played 126 games that season, hitting .263 with 13 homers and 39 RBIs as the team's starting centerfielder. He was back in the job at the start of the 2018 season, but on April 9th, he was hit in the chest by a pitch from Colorado Rockies reliever Scott Oberg, landing him on the disabled list with a cracked rib. He was hitting just .159 after 11 games. He returned to play 141 games and hit .245 with 8 homers and 51 RBIs as the team's starting center fielder. He had a similar season in 2019 when he played 151 games, hitting .234 with 12 homers and 37 RBIs. He was solid on defence and stole 24 bases in 24 attempts, but it was clear he was not going to develop into the type of speedy lead-off hitter the Padres had envisioned when they had first acquired him, as his OPS+ in four seasons had never been higher that 91.
- AJ Cassavell: "Talented Margot striving to become superstar: Padres' center fielder not satisfied with simply repeating solid rookie season", mlb.com, March 8, 2018.