Summer Swing: Standout Hitters
September 6, 2016
By Nathan Rode
School is back in session, temperatures are dropping and playoff races are heating up. Despite what the calendar says, summer is essentially over. It was another busy one in the amateur baseball world, filled with big events and highlights from the country’s top prospects. Summer started for me at the conclusion of the 2016 Major League Baseball Draft. After that, I started to look ahead at the Class of 2017 and beyond. The biggest events on my schedule were the Under Armour Classic, Tournament of Stars, Metropolitan Baseball Classic, Under Armour All-America Game, East Coast Professional Showcase, Prep Baseball Report Future Games and Area Code Games.
To wrap up our summer coverage, I’m sifting through all my notes and highlighting some of the standouts. We started with the top 2017 two-way players last week and continue with hitters. Pitchers, underclassmen and more will come over the next couple weeks.
Below are reports on 10 position players that stood out this summer and should factor prominently in the PBR Draft 100.
Any stats referenced in the reports are ones that were recorded myself or come from trustworthy sources and don’t include days I was not physically present. Specifically, the schedule didn’t allow for me to see the entirety of East Coast Pro and the Area Code Games.
Nick Allen, SS, Francis Parker HS, CA
At the Area Code Games, a scouting director asked who my favorite player of the summer was—not necessarily top prospect. I asked for some time to think, but by the time I got back to my seat, it hit me. Allen stands at 5-foot-8, 152 pounds, but you quickly look past his size when you see him play. He plays with energy and is more than just a grinder. He has tools. The Southern California recruit runs a 6.7-second 60 and has some of the best actions at shortstop in the class. His exchange is quick and clean, adding to his already strong arm. He also has good body control and make throws from different angles and on the move. At the plate, his swing is short and direct and he uses the entire field. He’ll take a pitch the other way, but can also turn on premium velocity. He’s strong enough to drive the ball over outfielders’ heads, but he’s at his best when he takes a line drive approach and finds the gaps. Between TOS and the Area Code Games, he was 9-for-29 and struck out just once.