Angels reportedly promoting 2023 first-rounder 1B Nolan Schanuel after 6 weeks in minors

The Los Angeles Angels are promoting first baseman Nolan Schanuel, their 2023 first-round draft pick, to the majors. Schanuel, the 11th overall pick, was drafted less than six weeks ago and has played 21 games in the minor leagues.

Schanuel has looked very good in those 21 games. He has hit .370/.510/.493 over 96 plate appearances with 21 walks, four doubles and two stolen bases. He has struck out only 10 times. Those 21 games were played at three levels, but most of his plate appearances came with the Double-A Rocket City Trash Pandas. With them, he has hit .339/.480/.475 over 16 games. In his most recent game Aug. 17 against the Tennessee Smokies, he went 2-for-4 with a double, a walk and a strikeout.

Schanuel can certainly hit at Double-A, but it's almost unheard of for a team to promote a prospect drafted just six weeks ago, especially if the prospect is a hitter. Developing hitters can take years, so the Angels must feel very confident in Schanuel's talent and his ability to adapt to major-league pitching, which will be unlike anything he has seen before.

FAU's Nolan Schanuel bats during an NCAA baseball game on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022 in Boca Raton, Fla. (AP Photo/Doug Murray)
The Angels have reportedly promoted their 2023 first-round draft pick, first baseman Nolan Schanuel. (AP Photo/Doug Murray)

The Angels have been doing everything they can to make a serious playoff run over the past several weeks, in an attempt to make the most of megastar Shohei Ohtani and try to convince him to re-sign with them this winter by promoting promising draft picks and showing they're serious about winning.

That hasn't exactly been working, though. Since the trade deadline, at which they acquired first baseman C.J. Cron and outfielder Randall Grichuk, the Angels are 4-11. They're 60-62 overall, 12.5 games behind the first-place Texas Rangers and seven games out of the third AL wild-card spot. They're hoping that adding Schanuel to the big-league lineup will help them make up some ground before time runs out.