As we continue our look at various players who the Rangers could grab in the 2013 MLB Draft, which kicks off this coming week, today we look at Arizona high school shortstop Riley Unroe.
Riley Unroe is a 5'11", 175 lb. switch hitting shortstop from Desert Ridge High School in Mesa, Arizona. Unroe was born on November 3, 1995, which means he'll be 17 when he's drafted, and which makes him one of the youngest players in this year's Rule 4 Draft.
Baseball America has Unroe ranked #53 on their top 500 list, and Jim Callis's latest mock draft has Unroe going to Texas with the second of their two first round picks. Keith Law has Unroe ranked #90 in his rankings. Scout.com has Unroe ranked #46 in their pre-draft rankings. Jonathan Mayo has Unroe ranked #92 in his rankings.
Unroe's father, Tim Unroe, is a former major league first baseman. The reports on him use words like "smart" and "heady," and his makeup and instincts are such that some think he'll end up being a better player than his raw skills would suggest. BA praises his "electric" bat-speed, though he's not someone who profiles to have a lot of power. While there are questions about whether he can stick at shortstop, the consensus seems to be that, if he does have to move off of short, he can play second base or centerfield. Mayo has Unroe's only plus tool as being his speed, but projects his future hit tool, fielding and arm as average.
Both Scout and BA have concerns about Unroe's signability -- he is a USC commit, and BA suggests it could take seven figures to sign him. A team like the Rangers could pop him in the second or third round and make him their one above-slot signee, much like Joey Gallo was last year.
You can see video of Unroe below:
RILEY UNROE PROSPECT VIDEO, SS, DESERT RIDGE HIGH SCHOOL (via Steve Fiorindo)
Riley Unroe interview (via StudentSports1)