By The Baseball Beginnings Guy
March 5, 2012
I always laugh at the fact that sometimes a simple high school game can show you a potential major league prospect in the best light – and it shows how scouting showcases have their own pitfalls.
The prime example here is Trey Williams. Put him in environment where there is pro wisdom not too far away and out of the meat-market circuit and he’s a different guy – and now, I love him. Here’s why.
I’m going to speak scouting lingo for a moment: “I have no problem putting an everyday number on this guy.”
What that means is he’s got a “5” in front of his name, and it makes him an everyday player.
Why: Williams is big, strong and quick with his hands, wrists and forearms. He and Ron Miller have the best bat speed here in Southern California this draft, and it’s not even close. It’s because of that speed that they both have the best raw power potential. Williams also showed me he knows his swing better than I gave him credit for the first few times I saw him. In his first at-bat against Max Fried, he took a well-timed, quality rip at the first pitch and fouled it straight back. That means he was on top of 94-95 velocity, even coming from a left-hander, and his timing and coordination in an actual game scenario – not a fabricated environment, I mean, a real game – are not as far apart as they have looked to me at places like Aflac and the Compton showcase.
This is all going to be about timing for Williams – timing with those hands. He waited a split second on Fried and hit a ground ball sharply through the hole. The next time up, Fried hit him with the first pitch.
Later, Williams showed that which is going to get him and keep him there – the raw power – a long home run to left field. That’s man strength in a boy’s body, but it’s an athletic strength, a loose and easy strength in a very physical package.
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Let’s talk other tools. The arm works. The arm strength is there for me to drop the 5 – big league average – on him, strong and accurate throws with carry, these will work for third base in the coming years. He could use a little long toss to get better extension in there and work out some of the short-arming I see.
His feet, in my estimation, will work enough for third. He can stay on the left side if an organization gives him the time and if he wants to prove he can do it. He’ll have enough lateral range, will be able to go to his back-hand side on the right and make a strong throw. His hands need work, but that’s correctable and I suspect he’s got the talent to make himself a capable defender at the major league level, which will place him light years ahead defensively of where he is now. He can run very well for a guy this big and strong. He’s on track to be a solid average ML runner, but I think there might be just one little more notch of gas in there if he wants it – and I’m saying that based on how well he accelerated from first to second and scored from second in the first inning. He’s very loose for someone so strong and has to work hard in the coming years to keep that flexibility as he grows stronger.
But all in all, you gotta dance with the lady who brought you to the dance, and that’s the bat and the power, which comes from his strength and his hands. He’s a future major league corner for me, with plus power.
Basic Grades: Hit 3/5, Raw & Power Production combined 5/7, Arm 5/5, Run 4/5, Field 3/5 OFP = 54
OFP Range: 53-55.