2016 Draft Profile: Corey Ray

School: University of Louisville; Class: Junior

Position: OF; B/T: L/L

Height: 5-11; Weight: 185

Previously Drafted: Seattle Mariners, 33rd round, 2013

 

Background: Let’s ignore the three-year run of consistent dominance for just a moment and consider the following: including his action in the Cape Cod Summer League last summer, Ray, a former 33rd round pick by the Mariners coming out of high school, has mashed 77 extra-base hits and swiped 83 bags in 174 games. For those counting at home, that’s nearly a stolen base and an extra-base hit about every two games.

And now for the awards and recognition:

  • 2015 Baseball America Second Team All-America
  • 2015 NCBWA Second Team All-America
  • 2015 D1Baseball Third Team All-America
  • 2015 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team
  • 2015 All-ACC First Team
  • ACC Player of the Week (4/6)
  • 2014 Louisville Regional All-Tournament Team

Through his first 49 games this season, Ray is slugging .325/.395/.593 – numbers, by the way, that more or less far in line with his .325/.395/.554 career line – with 15 doubles, one triple, and 13 homeruns while going a perfect 35-for-35 in the stolen base category.

 

Projection: Let’s continue to the praise, shall we? Between 2011 and 2015, here’s a list of Division I players that have reached the following milestones: 200 AB, .320 average, .390 OBP, .590 SLG, 10 homeruns, and 30 stolen bases: George Springer and Corey Ray.

Ray is an explosive, quick-twitch hitter: he’s incredibly efficient – and successful – on the base paths, packs a wallop at the plate – something that’s been on display for three seasons. He’s handled – or manhandled – elite competition as he slugged .355/.423/.548 with seven doubles, one triple, one homerun, and 10 stolen bases (in 11 attempts) with Team USA.

The only concern has been his tendency to swing-and-miss: he fanned in over 20% of his plate appearances last season, but has managed to cut that down to a more reasonable 13.2% in 2016.

Ray’s easily one of top players – if not the top – in the collegiate ranks.

 

Ceiling:   3.5-win player

Floor:  1.5- to 2.0-win player

Risk:  Moderate

Grade: First Round, Top 10



About

After serving as a video scout/analyst for Baseball Info Solutions, Joe Werner began writing at his original site, ReleasePoints.com. He’s since transitioned into his current niche, prospect analysis, at ProspectDigest.com. He has been fortunate — and incredibly blessed — to have some of his work published and mentioned by several major media outlets, including: ESPN, Cleveland.com and the Baseball Research Journal. He can be reached at: JosephMWerner@yahoo.com.