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School: San Diego; Class: Junior
Position: C; B/T: R/R
Height: 6-0; Weight: 205 pounds
Previously Drafted: N/A
Background: Consider the following comparison:
Both seasons are the best of each player’s respective careers. Player A flashed a little more power (.239 ISO vs. .185 ISO), but Player B showed a little more patience at the plate and far more speed. Which one do you chose?
OK. Let’s take it one step further and look at each players’ respective careers, both, coincidentally, have been three-year starters for their teams.
Pretty much the same thing again: Player A has flashed a little more pop (.175 ISO vs. .163); Player B has not only far better speed, but is a more efficient runner and has a little better eye at the plate.
Both play what are typically considered offensive deficient positions – Player A is a catcher, Player B a shortstop. Finally, both spend half their games in ballparks that tend to favor hitters.
So, which one do you choose?
Player B, right?
I’ll buy that. But what if I said Player B is likely to go in the first round, perhaps as high as somewhere between picks 15 to 20, and Player A isn’t likely to go off the board until at least round three, maybe even falling beyond that.
Player A is University of San Diego backstop Connor Joe. And Player B is the more highly touted Trea Turner, N.C. State’s shortstop.
Projection: Joe offers a nice combination of average to slightly better tools across the board – gap power with the potential to top out with double-digit dingers down the line, an improving eye at the plate, and the potential to hit for a decent average, something along the lines of .280 or so.
And while he hasn’t played against the level of competition that Turner has – meaning Team USA – Joe performed well in the Cape Cod League last summer, hitting .308/.383/.445 with nine doubles, one triple, and three homeruns.
Defensively, he’s actually been pretty horrible, throwing out three of the 23 attempted base stealers, but it’s important to remember that he’s in the middle of making the transition from first base, so it’s yet to be determined if he can remain behind the plate.
Ceiling: 2.5- to 3.0-win player
Floor: 1.0-win player
Likelihood of Reaching His Ceiling: Low
Draft Projection: Second Round
Photo Courtesy of Hayne Palmour IV / UT San Diegovia via utsandiego.com.