Photo Credit: AP / Frank Franklin III
After largely depleting the farm system over the past few seasons, the Red Sox are looking to restock with a strong performance in the draft.
As previously mentioned in the MLB Draft Preview, it is important to remember that Major League teams won’t draft for immediate needs – rather based on best player available / potential upside.
In the first round, the Red Sox selected 1B / 3B Triston Casas with the 26th overall pick. At first glance, this pick has the potential to develop into the Sox thumper in the middle of the order. By the time Casas reaches Boston, it is very likely that Mitch Moreland and Sam Travis are no longer members of the Red Sox.
Casas has drawn comparisons to Braves first baseman, Freddie Freeman. If he develops into a similar player, this pick will be an undeniable success for Dave Dombrowski.
After selecting at pick 26, the Red Sox had to wait until the 64th selection before drafting another young player. In the second round, the Sox drafted OF Nick Decker.
The 6 ft 200 lb outfielder has the potential to develop into a top of the order bat. He has flashed plus tools at the plate, while his defense remains more of a question mark. If he does not sign with the Red Sox, he will attend college at the University of Maryland.
Top scouting source, Baseball America, had this to say about Decker.
Decker is a left-left outfielder committed to Maryland with a polished approach at the plate. He’s developed a reputation as a talented hitter by repeatedly working quality at-bats throughout the summer and this spring. He has a very disciplined approach and an advanced understanding of the strike zone. This spring, he’s loosened up his hands and improved a swing path that was already solid. The team that drafts Decker will be all-in on the bat, as he profiles as a corner outfielder thanks to his average running ability and below-average arm. At 5-foot-11, 205 pounds, Decker is hard to project too much on currently, but his power is likely close to average because of solid bat speed and a feel to backspin the baseball. – Baseball America
As an evaluation, it sounds like Decker has the potential to develop into a starting-caliber outfielder in Boston; however the high school kids always have the potential to grow & develop into superstars.
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