|Gamboa with Lakewood in 2017, image- Jay Floyd|
Signed as an international free agent in 2014 at age 16, he participated that same year in the Florida Instructional League.
The following year, he made his professional regular season debut with the short-season Rookie level Gulf Coast League Phillies. In 50 games there, the switch-hitter notched a .189 batting average with seven doubles, three triples, 16 RBI and eight stolen bases,
Another short-season campaign was in store for Gamboa in 2016 as he batted .200 with Class A Williamsport. In 35 games there, he tallied six doubles, two home runs and five steals.
Gamboa took the step up to full-season A level Lakewood for the 2017 season.
He missed time that season with a hamstring issue, but the average would climb quite a bit and eyes would begin to truly open regarding the six-foot 185-pounder. In 79 games, Gamboa posted a .261 average with 12 doubles, three triples, six home runs, 29 RBI and eight stolen bases.
Last year, Gamboa moved up to Class A Advanced Clearwater, where he enjoyed a good first half and saw his production take a dip in the second half of the season. In 59 first half contests, he sported a .261 average with 11 doubles, three triples, a homer and 20 RBI. In 55 second half games, Gamboa batted .163 with three doubles, a triples, a homer and 17 RBI.
In the autumn months, Gamboa played with the Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League. In 20 games there he batted .186 with two doubles, three RBI and two stolen bases.
Defense is where Gamboa will often shine the most. He has great range and a plus arm that help him look impressive in the field.
Bat speed is a quality that stands out for Gamboa. His ceiling may be as an average offensive contributor, but with his great ability to man a premium position, he could become an attractive addition to dozens of big league clubs. In fact, I once overheard a scout from a particular American League powerhouse organization raving about Gamboa.
Quickness on the bases is a strength for the youngster who should be able to swipe more bags at the higher levels of the sport.
The Phillies clearly see a bright future for the 21-year-old, as they added him to their 40-man roster in order to protect him from December's Rule 5 draft. Gamboa should have time at the Double-A level in his future this year.
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