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There aren’t many 11th round picks with as much style and savvy as Rikuu Nishida.
Salina Rae Silver/South Side Sox

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2024 South Side Sox Top Prospect No. 86: Rikuu Nishida

Small in stature, tall in skills

Rikuu Nishida

Left Fielder
150 pounds
Age: 22
2023 High Level Kannapolis (Low-A)
Age relative to high level +1.1 years
SSS rank among all left fielders in the system 4
Overall 2023 stats 20 games ⚾️ 0 HR ⚾️ 6 RBI ⚾️ .224/.307/.276 ⚾️ 8 BB ⚾️ 9 K ⚾️ 6-of-8 (75.0%) SB

After hitting .383 at Mt. Hood Community College over two seasons, Rikuu Nishida transferred to Oregon. The Japan native started 2023 as Oregon’s second baseman before moving to right field in mid-March. He also swung a wood bat all spring, which is extremely unusual in non-Summer League games.

Nishida has a similar profile to the other PAC-12 White Sox draftee that taken three rounds earlier, Eddie Park. Both are slender lefties who don’t hit the ball very hard, but control the strike zone (9.1% BB vs 8.7% K) — and with Nishida, he provides some defensive versatility as well. However Nishida doesn’t have the same kind of optimal launch angles that Park does (he ran a near-60% ground ball rate, among the top-50 in D1 in 2023).

Nishida’s Baseball Cube player ratings
Contact 98
Speed 90
Runs 89
Durability 58
Hitting 57
RBIs 25
XBH 21
Power 20

Nishida boasts elite contact skill to go along with amazing speed. It’s plausible to see him working his way up the ladder into a versatile utility player in the majors.

For now, he’s scuffling away in A-ball, transitioning to the intensity of the pro game. He could possibly tune up at Kannapolis to begin the year, but it’s likely the White Sox challenge him with a High-A assignment breaking camp.

(And for more on Rikuu, see Salina Rae Silver’s outstanding Q&A with him from last August.)

2024 South Side Sox Top 100 White Sox Prospects

86. Rikuu Nishida, LF
87. Caden Connor, LF
88. Zach Franklin, RHRP
89. Jeremy González, LHSP
90. Jerry Burke, RHRP
91. Frankeli Arias, LHSP
92. Mikey Kane, 3B
93. Carlton Perkins, RHSP
94. Tyler Neslony, LF
95. Drew Dalquist, RHSP
96. Jason Matthews, SS
97. Jonathan Stiever, RHSP
98. Tommy Sommer, LHSP
99. Daniel González, LHRP
100. Elier Gil, C

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