20-80 Word Scouting Reports, MLB Draft 2017 Part 7

Previous entries in this series:

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6

Now the seventh upload in a series of somewhere under 20 uploads of scouting reports on players for the upcoming 2017 MLB Draft. Again, observations are a mix of my own and various scouting services:

Alex Faedo – RHP
6’5, 225
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 21.6
Junior at Florida
Last drafted: 2014, 40th (Detroit)

A power sinker-slider pitcher with a change-up that was plus in the past, Faedo has a prototypical build scouts seeking out a frontline starter are looking for. There is a fair amount of worry about his delivery, both for his high-cocked elbow and unbalanced landing. The landing worry is exacerbated by arthroscopic surgery performed on both knees before the season. Fastball is 90-95 with run and sink. Slider is near-Bukauskas level. Scouts split on Faedo’s future in rotation.

Bubba Thompson – OF
6’2, 180
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 19.0
McGill-Toolen Catholic HS, AL
Commitment: Alabama

Superb athlete in the Monte Harrison mold. Thompson’s primary tool is his speed, which ranges between plus and double plus. Speed transfers over to defensive side of the ball, and with a plus arm he’s a very projectable defender in center. He hasn’t hit against top competition for the most part, so his hit tool may take some patience. He has a wide stance with moderate load, and uses hips well to drive the ball.

Blayne Enlow – RHP
6’4, 180
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 18.2
St. Amant HS, LA
Commitment: LSU

Enviable pitching frame for an 18 year old, though Enlow lags in velocity behind some of his top high school peers. Sits in the upper 88-91, though he has very good arm speed and exceptional mechanics for someone his age. His curveball is one of the best in the high school class, a true 12-6 with plus spin rate. Changeup is just there right now, but I saw a few good ones and it projects as at least average.

Morgan Cooper – RHP
6’4, 220
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 22.9
Redshirt Junior at Texas
Last drafted: 2016, 34th round (Washington)

Tommy John surgery in 2014 set Cooper’s career back, but he returned to form this spring. He throws nearly over the top, generating great plane on his 92-95 mph fastball. He has a full starter’s arsenal, throwing a changeup, curveball, cutter, and slider, in that order in terms of general effectiveness. The big question mark on Cooper is simply durability – will his arm be able to hold velocity if he starts every five days?

Kevin Smith – SS
6’1, 185
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 20.11
Junior at Maryland
Last drafted: Never

A defensive-first shortstop who should be able to stick there as a pro due to his quick, soft hands and arm that evaluators range between average and plus. Smith needs to work on strike zone management at the next level. Despite the aforementioned quick hands and plus raw power, he has difficulty getting to that power due to tendency to expand the zone and middling bat to ball skill.

Mason House – OF
6’2, 190
B/T: L/L
Draft age: 18.9
Whitehouse HS, TX
Commitment: Oklahoma State

A left-handed poor man’s Austin Beck, if you will. Went from virtual unknown to must-follow between last year and this. Largely untested against top level competition. Doesn’t have quite as much bat speed as Beck, but swing is not as violent either. House generates good loft with swing path and a big step before his swing, though that piece may need to be toned down. Above average speed and average arm. Most see him moving from center to a corner.

Tyler Johnson – RHP
6’2, 180
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 20.9
Junior at South Carolina
Last drafted: Never

The closer at South Carolina and looks like a reliever at the pro level as well. Throws a fastball and throws it hard, regularly gassing it upwards of 98-99 and occasionally touching 100. It has good life and is undoubtedly a MLB-caliber pitch. Johnson’s slider is far behind his fastball, though it has some late break. Changeup is probably not a viable pitch at pro level. Command is ok. High waisted but stride is on the short side, and slow.

Drew Rasmussen – RHP
6’1, 225
B/T: R/R
Draft age: 21.10
Junior at Oregon State
Last drafted: 2014, 39th round (Arizona)

Only started pitching in game action April after recovering from Tommy John surgery. A spark plug of a pitcher, Rasmussen throws in the mid-90s in short bursts with a heavy fastball. As a starter, sits in the low 90s. Shows good slider at times, but is inconsistent with it. Even more so with changeup. Due to injury and only a fastball as a plus pitch, many see him as a reliever. That’s not set in stone, however.

Greg Deichmann – OF/1B
6’2, 195
B/T: L/R
Draft age: 22.0
Junior at Louisiana State
Last drafted: 2015, 26th round (Minnesota)

A big power threat from the left side. Using just a small toe tap for timing, Deichmann uses above average bat speed and a lofted swing to hit balls over the wall to all fields. While he’s shown some more patience this year, is prone to striking out and may never carry a high batting average. Limited to corner OF/first base defensively due to lack of foot speed, though his arm is at least average.

Devin Hairston – 2B/SS
5’8, 175
Draft age: 21.2
Junior at Louisville
Last drafted: Never

One of the smaller players in the draft. Hairston has more than enough agility and glove skill to stick at shortstop, but his arm is quite fringey at the position. Many see him as a second baseman, or perhaps a center fielder. Makes solid line drive contact. Does not take enough walks and doesn’t have the elite speed you’d expect from someone his size.

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