School: Arkansas; Class: Junior
Position: CF; B/T: L/L
Height: 5-10; Weight: 180
Previously Drafted: Cincinnati Reds, 13th round, 2013
Background: After getting the call as a late round – likely courtesy – selection of his hometown Cincinnati Reds, Benintendi has been one of – if not the – highest risers in college baseball this season. The Madeira HS alum had a solid showing during his debut campaign with the Razorbacks last season, hitting a solid .276/.368/.333, though he added just 10 extra-base hits.
This season, however, his power has taken a dramatic developmental leap forward: he’s slugged 17 dingers in his first 61 games; good enough for the fourth best total among all D1 players. Overall, he’s mashing to the tune of .415/.511/.771 with 12 doubles, a pair of triples, and 21 stolen bases (in 25 attempts) to go along with the power.
Projection: Not too much date to go off of, just about two seasons worth, but Benintendi is showcasing an incredible collection of offensive potential for Arkansas this season: power, speed, patience, and a solid hit tool. Making it more impressive is that Arkansas’ home ballpark tends to deflate offensive production.
Benintendi has the potential to develop into a better-than-average everyday MLB’er down the line, offering up 15/15 potential with solid on-base skills and perhaps the ability to hit in the upper third of a team’s lineup.
Ceiling: 3.0- to 3.5-win player
Floor: 1.5-win player
Grade: Mid First Round
Photo Courtesy of arkansasfight.com.