2018 MLB Draft preview: Connor Scott scouting report.
With the 2018 MLB Draft less than three weeks away — the first round kicks off on June 4, 2018 — its time to start offering capsule looks at players the Texas Rangers could select with their top picks. The Rangers’ first round pick is at #15 and their second round pick is at #55 — they have no compensatory picks this year.
Leading up to draft day, we will be doing writeups of some of the players who could end up getting selected by the Rangers with one of their first two picks. Today, we are looking at Florida high school outfielder Connor Scott.
Connor Scott is a 6’4”, 180 lb. lefthanded hitter and thrower out of Plant High School in Tampa, Florida. Baseball America and MLB Pipeline both say he draws comparisons to Astros prospect Kyle Tucker, who Houston drafted in 2015 one selection after the Rangers made their ill-fated Dillon Tate pick. Scott is seen as a potential five tool player, with speed and athleticism — he’s also a pitcher, throwing in the low 90s on the mound, and BA says some folks like him better on the mound than as a position player.
Where Scott ends up going in the draft largely depends on how teams feel about his hit tool and his power projection. MLB Pipeline has him as a 70 runner with a 60 arm, though there are questions about whether he can stick in center field, or will get too big and have to move to a corner outfield spot. If a team is confident in the hit tool, he makes sense as a mid-first-rounder, whereas teams that have more concerns about the likelihood of it developing would seem to see him as a late first or supplement first round pick.
There’s a fairly large spread in how the various prognosticators rank Scott. Baseball America has Scott at #23, saying his lack of playing time this past summer due to having his appendix removed means he’s been seen less against top talent and thus has more question looming over him. Keith Law has Scott at #32, seeing him as a right fielder with a “fair chance to hit.” MLB Pipeline is more bullish on Scott, putting him at #18 on their list. Fangraphs, meanwhile, has Scott at #10, saying his upside is “arguably the highest” among the high school hitters in this year’s class, and saying he projects to above-average with his hit and power tools.
Jonathan Mayo’s most recent mock draft has Scott going to the Miami Marlins at #13, and also drops a Christian Yelich comp on Scott — Yelich, of course, was originally drafted by the Marlins, and traded this past offseason. Fangraphs has Scott going to the Brewers -- who, interestingly enough, were the team that traded for Yelich — at #21 in their latest mock. Keith Law has Tampa going local and taking Scott at #16 in his most recent most draft, while BA has Scott falling all the way to Cleveland at #35 in their most recent projection.
Scott fits what the Rangers tend to look at with their premium picks, being an athletic toolsy guy. Whether Texas has Scott as a candidate at #15 likely depends on how they evaluate his hit tool — if they believe in it and think, as the folks at Fangraphs do, he has a realistic chance of being a 6 in both power and hitting, Scott would seem to be someone Texas would be happy to see fall to them at #15.