Prep Baseball Report

Draft Forecast: Cincinnati Reds

Nathan Rode
National Supervisor

TEAM: Cincinnati Reds
PICK: 5 (Slot: $5,946,400)
POOL: $10,900,400

2017: Hunter Greene, RHP, Notre Dame HS, CA (2nd overall)
2016: Nick Senzel, 3B, Tennessee (2nd overall)
2015: Tyler Stephenson, C, Kennesaw Mountain HS, GA (11th overall)
2014: Nick Howard, RHP, Virginia (19th overall)
2013: Phil Ervin, OF, Samford (27th overall)

HISTORY: Cincinnati was in a good spot in 2017, picking second overall and knowing they would get SS Royce Lewis (JSerra Catholic HS, CA) or RHP Hunter Greene (Notre Dame Prep, CA). The Twins took Lewis with the first pick and the Reds were happy to add an arm that can hit triple digits to their farm system. They took the best college hitter available in 2016 in 3B Nick Senzel (Tennessee) and have mixed in a few high schoolers with high upside in recent years.

FORECAST: The Reds are probably the ceiling for a high school product like LHP Matt Liberatore (Mountain Ridge HS, AZ) or OF Jarred Kelenic (Waukesha West HS, WI), but in all likelihood, we’ll see another college guy go off the board here. It’s hard to imagine RHP Brady Singer (Florida) lasting this long, but there is some nitpicking going on with him. 2B Nick Madrigal (Oregon State), SS Jonathan India (Florida), OF Travis Swaggerty (South Alabama), C Joey Bart (Georgia Tech) or 3B Alec Bohm (Wichita State) could be the best available college bats with LHPs Ryan Rolison (Mississippi) and Shane McClanahan (South Florida) being the top arms.

Brady Singer, RHP, Florida
PBR Draft Board:
FB: 55/70            SL: 50/60            CH: 40/55
At 6-foot-5, 210 pounds, Singer has strength throughout a long, lean frame, especially in the lower half. He worked with an up-tempo pace, a lot of moving parts with a rocker step toward first base and a high front side after separation. He throws from a 3/4 slot, but high front side creates not only tilt to the fastball, but also natural late, sinking action. The fastball worked 93-94, touching 95 mph early, before settling in around 88-92. After a first inning where the fastball was up, he made an adjustment and worked more consistently down in the zone, attacking with the pitch. (Doug Freeman)

Find Singer's full report in the Draft HQ.

Matthew Liberatore, LHP, Mountain Ridge HS, AZ
PBR Draft Board: 3
FB: 50/60            CB: 60/70            CH: 50/60
While this wasn't his best outing, Liberatore's body of work and projection makes him a sure fire first rounder and candidate to go first overall. He pitches with an average fastball that tends to sit around 90 after the first inning, but has touched some big numbers early in outings. I am comfortable projecting a plus fastball and wouldn't be shocked if he makes a big jump to a 70 fastball due to the combination of projection in his body and athletic delivery. The curveball is his best pitch at present, often showing plus with tight rotation and late downward break. (Jordon Banfield)

Find Liberatore's full report in the Draft HQ.

Nick Madrigal, 2B, Oregon State
PBR Draft Board:
HIT: 45/55            POWER: 40/50            SPEED: 60/60            DEFENSE: 50/55            ARM: 50/50
Madrigal is just coming back from an injury to his wrist that kept him out for a good chunk of the season, but he has picked up very much where he left off. His quick hands and pitch recognition allow him to put aggressive swings on any pitch early or ahead in counts, and he makes adjustments later to spray the ball to all fields. He is quick and agile at second base with clean hands and a quick release. The arm plays average, but is accurate. He has superior instincts and always appears to be several steps ahead. (Shooter Hunt)

Find Madrigal's full report in the Draft HQ. 

Jonathan India, 3B, Florida
PBR Draft Board:
HIT: 40/55            POWER: 40/55            SPEED: 60/60            DEFENSE: 50/60            ARM: 55/60
India is a complete player who possesses an unmatched combination of tools, skills and instincts of any college infielder in this year’s draft. Jeremy Eierman may have bigger tools and Nick Madrigal more skills, but India has both. He is a plus athlete with good body control and an above average to plus arm. He is a pus runner underway and has very good bat speed. He shows above average raw power in batting practice and got to that power in the game with his ability to recognize pitches and consistently get his best swing off each at-bat. (David Seifert)

Find India's full report in the Draft HQ.

Jarred Kelenic, OF, Waukesha West HS, WI
HIT: 50/60            POWER: 40/50            SPEED: 70/70            DEFENSE: 50/60            ARM: 60/70
At 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, Kelenic has advanced strength and rock-solid muscle throughout his frame. He’s an overall explosive, polished and quick-twitch athlete, a true five-tool prospect. He has a polished offensive approach, as he is extremely balanced, quiet, consistent and explosive at the plate. He consistently makes hard contact, driving the ball to all fields and is strong through contact, generating advanced bat speed. (Sean Duncan)

Find Kelenic's full report in the Draft HQ.

Travis Swaggerty, OF, South Alabama
PBR Draft Board: 12
HIT: 40/55            POWER: 30/45            SPEED: 60/60            DEFENSE: 50/60            ARM: 60/60
Swaggerty has a Brett Gardner frame and is an athletic center fielder with tools, baseball skills and instincts. Despite hitting off balance—a result of a narrow base and long stride—he keeps his hands back and connected to his hips. He has explosive, strong hands and uses his hips well. He swings easy and whistles the bat through the zone. He is smooth defensively, consistently running strong routes to go with his easy, plus speed. (David Seifert)

Find Swaggerty's full report in the Draft HQ.

Joey Bart, C, Georgia Tech
PBR Draft Board: 13
HIT: 30/40            POWER: 30/50            SPEED: 50/40            DEFENSE: 50/55            ARM: 60/70
Bart has a large, durable frame and brings a physical presence to the field. His defensive skills, arm strength and raw power separate him from the other catchers in the college draft class. In addition to plus arm strength, he set up tight behind the batter, showed a very quick and easy catch/throw transfer with a smooth release and accurate throws with good carry to second base between innings. Offensively, he showed plus raw pull power with bat strength. He displayed average bat speed in BP, but it was more slider bat speed in the game, as opposing pitchers were slowing it down with an offspeed mix. He sets up in an upright, slightly open stance and creates some length with a bat tilt toward the pitcher for his load. (David Seifert)

Find Bart's full report in the Draft HQ.

Alec Bohm, 3B, Wichita State
PBR Draft Board:
HIT: 40/50            POWER: 40/60            SPEED: 40/30            DEFENSE: 40/45            ARM: 50/55

Bohm is a tall, power-hitting infielder, who has a chance to impact the game with his bat. He has a selective aggressive approach with good balance, strength and above-average bat speed. The swing is free, easy and compact for a man his size. Defensively, he showed fair actions and hands at third base with average range. He worked hard during pregame BP, taking dozens of groundballs in all directions. He has a high center of gravity and will need to work even harder on a daily basis to stick at the hot corner. (David Seifert)

Find Bohm's full report in the Draft HQ.

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