Texas Rangers prospect Bubba Thompson talked about his approach to stealing bases in a Q&A with Prospect with MLB.com earlier this week.
Thompson, who is one of Rangers’ Top 30 Prospects as rated by MLB.com, developed a reputation for stealing bases at Triple-A Round Rock.
Last week, Thompson became the single-season stolen base king for the Express as a Triple-A franchise when he stole his 45th in a 2-0 win over the Las Vegas Aviators.
Thompson stole the record in the third inning and replaced Esteban German as the franchise’s Triple-A leader in a single season. The Germans stole 44 stolen bases in 2011.
Thompson said he knew who to talk to as he worked out his approach to stealing bases.
“You just have to go through the years and talk to guys here and there and pick their brains,” Thompson said. “(Flying) is what I want to do when I’m on the basics. And just on the basics and just learning. All the reps you can. And then it comes naturally to you.
“But really, just get out and go, man. Not thinking, just get out and go. Knowing how far I gotta go, knowing the situation I gotta fly here, but at the end of the day, use my l athletics and what I’ve done all my life and I just do.
The Rangers drafted Thompson No. 26 overall in 2017 and paid him a $2.1 million signing bonus after releasing him from McGill-Toolen Catholic High School in Mobile, Alabama. Thompson had signed up to play baseball in Alabama and was a highly regarded football recruit. as well.
Thompson is playing his first full season with Round Rock. The 24-year-old outfielder is batting nearly .300 for the season.
At one point in 2019, Thompson was the No. 48 national prospect according to Baseball Prospectus.
In 2019, he was assigned to Class A Down East and hit .178/.261/.312/.573 with five home runs and 21 RBIs in 57 games as he missed much of the season due to of injuries. He then played in the Arizona Fall League and was named a Fall League All-Star.
After the 2020 season was canceled due to COVID-19, he hit .275/.325/.483/.808 with 16 home runs, 52 RBIs and 25 stolen bases for Double-A Frisco.
You can find Matthew Postins on Twitter @PostinsPostcard