The 2015 First-Year Player Draft begins Monday. With excellent coverage like Kiley McDaniel’s latest mock draft at FanGraphs and Michael Baumann’s Grantland primer on top prospects, the internet has made the greatness of players like Alex Bregman and Carson Fulmer readily available.
One doesn’t have to look hard for all the details on the draft’s top talent, but it isn’t so easy to find information on potential late-round steals. For that, Most Valuable Zobrist has you covered.
Here are five players to look for in the draft’s later rounds:
Jaxx Vilkhommen, OF, State School of Resemblance to The Hague (OH) – There is no doubting Jaxx’s ability to hit, as the big righty mashed Ohio’s 2A competition to the tune of .577/.790/1.120. I’ve spoken to a few scouts who worry about whether his glove can play in center, but others point to a game in which SSoRtTH lost both corner outfielders to injury and Vilkhommen successfully covered the entire outfield for four innings. The real concern here is Jaxx’s size, as he grew 43 inches before his senior year and now stands 9’8”.
Quinntucket Wells-Barney, SS, Tri-County School of Trades (NM) – Physically, Quinntucket is a rare specimen who leaves little to question about his status as a true five-tool prospect. Mentally, however, there are several red flags. A few weeks ago, we heard reports that Wells-Barney hasn’t slept in over three years. There is also some concern that QWB’s habit of wearing a tool belt containing five actual tools may hinder his ability to hit Major League pitching.
Xart Blumenthal, LHP, Clandestine University – It’s safe to say that, of all the pitching prospects with no arms, Blumenthal is the most hyped. The 22 year-old leaves Clandestine as the most decorated pitcher in Big Conference history, so production is not a concern. Scouts rave about the consistency of the lefty’s mechanics, and love that his delivery method – in which he places the ball between his teeth, performs a forward somersault, and jerks his neck forward from a side angle to propel the ball forward – places no stress on his non-existent throwing arm.
Terdo Crimshaw , 1B, Perennial College of General Studies – Crimshaw can absolutely rake, but there is significant concern that he grew too accustomed to college life and may have difficulty adjusting to the real world. During interviews with several teams, Terdo brought with him a boombox playing Bob Marley’s “Three Little Birds” on repeat and seemed more interested in playing a solo game of hacky sack than answering questions. When he did speak, he mostly avoided the questions and, instead, expressed a very rudimentary understanding of the consequences of white flight.
Gnarth Flugenbort, C, Brian Doyle-Murray Academy for Reformed Boys (IL) – I’ve talked to several scouts who say Flugenbort’s skills behind the plate may be the most advanced in this draft. Offensively, he is certainly a project, but he has the frame and raw skills to be a 15-20 HR hitter in the Majors. Gnarth was considered by some to be a fringe first-round prospect, but his status took a serious hit after revealing his previous affiliation with the country’s most violent age-10-&-under motorcycle gang. Despite the character concerns, he remains the most likely of the prospects on this list to charge into the top ten rounds.