20-80 Word Scouting Reports, MLB Draft 2017 Part 1

Welcome to 20-80 word scouting reports, which are scouting reports of 20-80 words. In this case, for players in the upcoming 2017 MLB Draft. Observations are a mix of my own and various scouting services. Right to it:

MacKenzie Gore – LHP
6’2, 170
B/T: L/L
Draft age: 18.3
Whiteville HS, NC
Commitment: East Carolina

Extraordinarily polished for his age. Strike thrower, plus command. Can manipulate low 90s fastball with both cut and armside run. Fastball touches 96-97 but sits lower and lacks plane due to delivery. Delivery includes 80 grade leg kick. Three impressive secondaries: plus mid-70s curveball, potential plus low 80s change, and above average low-mid 80s slider. Keeps fastball velocity and feel for secondaries deep into outings. Minor worry about how mechanics will age given flexibility needed. Good hitter.

DL Hall – LHP
6’2, 170
B/T: L/L
Draft age: 18.8
Valdosta HS, GA
Commitment: Florida State

Common Scott Kazmir comp. Shorter but not small lefty with athletic build well equipped to handle his physical delivery. Probably best curve in draft class, thrown in high 70s with late break and great depth. Fastball not too shabby either, with velocity up to 97, and sits 91-94. Fastball straight but driven down well. Improving changeup that needs reps. Plus command potential, but arm wanders through slots at times and he has a slight cross body delivery.

Adam Haseley – OF/LHP
6’1, 185
B/T: L/L
Draft age: 21.1
Junior at Virginia
Last drafted: Never

Two-way player who will be drafted as a hitter. Top of scale hand speed with the bat. Can drive balls to all fields. Swing is a bit unorthodox and he has to make concerted effort to lift ball at contact in order to drive it out. Some question about how power will translate to wood. Probably can stick in CF, but won’t be special there defensively. Good outfield arm. Above average underway speed.

Heliot Ramos – OF
6’2, 185
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 17.9
Alfonso Casta Martinez HS, PR
Commitment: Florida International

Some see him as a five tool talent, others question whether he’ll be able to hit. Raw power and speed are both plus. Athletic. With work and reps, speed should allow him to stay in CF. Arm is good if not always accurate. Loose wrists help make loud contact, but a neophyte when it comes to pitch recognition and swing consistency. Need lots of projection to see success with swing. Bat speed is there, if he can make it work. Not yet 18.

Evan White – 1B/OF
6’3, 177
B/T: R/L
Draft age: 21.2
Junior at Kentucky
Last drafted: Never

Athletic and lanky with a flat swing plane but great bat speed and projects to be a high average hitter at the next level. Works the count. The rare backwards bat/throw profile. If he threw righty, could play anywhere on diamond. Plays first at a 70 level, Gold Glove caliber. Probably plus corner OF as well, with a good arm. Could even be a CF. Plus speed regardless of position. Power is single big (and it’s a big) question mark.

Brendon Little – LHP
6’2, 195
B/T: L/L
Draft age: 20.10
Sophomore at State JC of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota
Previously drafted: 2015, 36th round (San Francisco)

Intriguing arm from left side. Based on stuff alone, a solid first rounder. Fastball is 92-95+, usually with good life and plane. Curveball is also plus, a true hammer thrown from high 3/4 arm slot. Changeup is somewhat nascent, but projects as average. Main issue is command, and even control. Short stride in delivery causes both to short-circuit at times. Many scouts think he’s a reliever due to delivery. Misses bats either way.

Jacob Heatherly – LHP
6’3, 200
B/T: L/L
Draft age: 19.0
Cullman HS, AL
Commitment: Alabama

A lot of Braxton Garrett comps. A delivery about as simple as it gets – looks like he’s playing catch. Athletic pitcher whose calling card needs to be command. Fastball is solid at 90-93, but doesn’t have a lot of movement beyond a little sink. High 70s curveball flashes plus but has been inconsistent. Has not needed to throw a changeup much, but that will change. Good hitter. Physically mature. Will be 19 on draft day. Could be fast riser.

Hagen Danner – RHP/C
6’2, 195
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 18.8
Huntington Beach HS, CA
Commitment: UCLA

Two-way prospect who teams are split on as to a position. As a catcher, he has an arm touching double plus and moves well behind the dish. At the plate, there are question marks regarding pull-heavy nature of swing, though he has at least average raw power. As a pitcher, throws 90-94 and spots fastball well, though he catches too much of the plate at times. Curveball and change both flash plus. Some durability worries.

Alex Scherff – RHP
6’4, 205
B/T: S/R
Draft age: 19.4
Colleyville Heritage HS, TX
Commitment: Texas A&M

Workhorse build. Fastball jumped in velocity after he lost 40 pounds. Heavy fastball sits in the middle 90s, touching 98. But changeup is even more impressive, arguably best in class. It’s thrown with same arm slot/arm speed as fastball, and thrown with conviction. Breaking ball hasn’t been needed in games and needs work. Command can be iffy due to stiffness and short stride in delivery. Some see him as a power reliever due to this. Very old for class.

Jacob Pearson – OF
6’0, 195
B/T: L/R
Draft age: 19.0
West Monroe HS, LA
Commitment: LSU

Shorter, but strong, physical, high energy player whose only major fault is a well below average arm in the outfield. There’s some question as to whether he’ll stick in center field, and he’ll be limited to left field or first base if he can’t. Good bat to ball skills and improved swing have lead to projection for at least average power. Above average to plus runner. Old for class.

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