Hey all, just dropping in to go over a few observations from yesterday’s game between some of the higher polish Rangers prospects and Grayson College. Two caveats: Grayson College is no baseball slouch, they are a consistently good squad and have produced guys like Tyler Ivey in the past. However, yesterday they were going through their depth chart and the quality of competition was inconsistent and ultimately not great for evaluating spin recognition/approach. Second, players were rotating in an out so I’m not getting too deep here, just some brief notes I observed on a select few players.
Josh Jung is mostly filled out with a large well-muscled frame. The righty is loose and explosive and displays the kind of twitchy motion that good hitters often show. He generates plus plus bat speed with excellent feel for how to adjust his swing to location and get the barrel on the ball. The physical bits are there for a plus or better hit tool if the approach matches the tools. He’s a good bet to have the physical capability to make some adjustments to get more loft in the swing if the intent is there. Defensively he displayed some quick reactions at 3B and made a rangy play to his left before making a spin with poor footwork and throwing the ball in the dirt in front of 1B. Footwork can be fixed and the reactions and ability to quickly move to his left are good signs for his future there.
Sherten Apostel has a massive frame. He could push 265 lb. and it would look incredibly normal on him. He is probably 230 lb. right now and could comfortably support a bit more. He’s already strong as an ox as he pushed an 88 MPH fastball to the top of the wall in the deepest part of the park in RF. His large frame creates some length in the swing, but he keeps the hands closer to the body and generates plus barrel acceleration and premium barrel velocity. He uses all fields and has the kind of strength that turns a soft looping line drive out to the 2B into a soft single. He only had one non-routine play at 3B on a ball dribbling towards 3B and although he got off the line quick, the feet were heavy and the motions a bit raw.
Blaine Crim and Kellen Strahm are both intriguing players, and not just for senior signs. Both seemingly have solid barrel control and above average bat speed. Crim specifically does a good job getting in sync and decelerating the hips at the point of contact, which ensures that he’s getting to all the power he’s generating in the swing. Strahm has quality athleticism and displayed some good reads and routes in RF even though the balls hit towards him were mostly un-catchable.
Davis Wendzel doesn’t jump out at you with any loud tools or an imposing frame, but there are some interesting things to watch in the profile. He has a longer rotational swing that is fun to look at and generates good barrel velocity at the point of contact. He makes loud contact off the barrel and he could have significant pull-side power. He didn’t look incredibly comfortable in the cage or at the plate, but he could very well be in the middle of making some changes to his swing. He played shortstop in this game but didn’t have any opportunities to flash the glove.
Some quick notes:
-Curtis Terry and Tyreque Reed are absolute units. They probably are carrying a bit of extra weight. Terry has shorter stroke that still generates what I assume are pretty crazy exit velocities. Both guys have solid feel for hitting, but Terry looks more explosive right now. Terry also has a pretty strange running motion.
-Miguel Aparicio has a beautiful looking swing. It’s one of those sweet left-handed strokes with one of those eye-catching arcs to meet the ball at a good angle of attack. Above average bat speed.
-Yohel Pozo is an incredibly aggressive swinger with good coordination.
-David Garcia has good hands and I’m hoping for a longer look tomorrow. He jumped on some fastballs and made hard contact that didn’t quite drop in for hits. Has an athletic build for a catcher. Big priority for me over the next two weeks.
-A lot of org-arm types went for the Rangers yesterday. Grant Anderson, Joshua Javier, and Spencer Mraz flashed bits and pieces. Anderson specifically has crazy run on his 91-93 fastball from a cross-fire arm slot, guys like that occasionally find themselves in MLB bullpens.
I probably won’t have time to drop notes like this after every game or practice I attended, but it’s great to get this fantastic mini-camp off and running. I’ll be doing in depth write-ups over at BP starting next week and if y’all have any questions in the meantime feel free to reach out!