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2021 Super 60: First Impressions


Shooter Hunt
National Crosschecker



The Super 60 is just weeks away with some of the country’s top MLB Draft prospects set to show off their tools at the premier event to kick off “Draft Season”. Hardly strangers to the national stage, each of the players coming to the event have steadily built quality resumes throughout their high school careers. In this week’s On the Hunt, a look back at the first reports from 12 of the participants with a glimpse at some updated thoughts prior to the Super 60.


+ Super 60 Info
+ Roster


Vytas Valincius 3B / Baylor, TN / 2021

 

(March 16, 2018)
He would be one of the more impressive 2018-grads, physically, but Valincius is only a freshman. Featuring a barrel chest and thick, strong legs, the 6-foot-3, 235-pound potential two-way prospect would be one of the better known names in the class with merely his size, but combine that with the athleticism that he exhibits along with a quick, strong arm, and his play is even bigger than his frame. The right-handed hitter already shows an advanced ability to drive the ball to all fields. He sets up in a wider base in a slight crouch, and utilizes a short stride to smoothly rock his hands down and back with a minor barrel tilt before ripping the barrel through the zone. His flat path is direct to the ball, and culminates in a high finish. The ball explodes off his bat with a 94 mph exit velocity off the tee, and his power should increase as he matures into his frame even more. Valincius showcases solid hands on the infield and could have a chance to stick at third base with his strong arm, although he will likely have the power necessary to play first base at the next level. On the mound, the big right-hander puts together a steady, compact delivery that he repeats with ease. His short, quick arm allows for the ball to jump out of his hand, and he worked 84-87 in an early season bullpen at a recent PBR Illinois event. His curveball was thrown for strikes at 75-78, and featured tight spin while taking 11/5 shape. Even more impressive was his feel for what could end up being a power-changeup. The pitch was thrown with fastball arm speed at 76-78 and showcased late sink and arm side run. While he is advanced physically, Valincius’ toolset will have recruiters even more excited moving forward.

UPDATED THOUGHTS:
It would have been easy to classify Valincius as the kid who was just more mature and bigger than everyone else early on (which he was, and still is), and distinguish that as the overwhelming factor in his success, but that would hardly do his talent justice. The ball still jumps off the 6-foot-4, 240-pound right-handed hitter’s bat, and the advanced Blast/Trackman metrics support and quantify what the eyes see. While the power is easy to dream on, it is his present in-game ability to produce against elite arms that stands out, and has allowed him to make considerable advancements since his freshman year. Relaxed and confident in his approach, the game slows down for Valincius while tracking pitches, and the Chicago-native committed even further to his development when he transferred to the Baylor School in Tennessee to get more at-bats almost two years ago. His position profile will be the most interesting thing to follow over the next half year leading up to the draft, and there is a chance that he can stick at third base given his athleticism and strong arm, although the bat should more than allow him to stick in a first base only role.


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