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Friday, June 10, 2016
2016 MLB Draft: God Gave the Giants Bryan Reynolds
It seems like fate, destiny or whatever that the Giants, with just one pick in the first day of the 2016 MLB Draft and it's at number 59, drafted Bryan Reynolds, an outfielder from Vanderbilt. Of all the prospects available at that the time when the Giants are on the clock, it has to be him. Listed as number 2 in the top Cape Cod League prospects by D1baseball.com, Reynolds was listed at number 8 in the 2016 MLB Draft preseason list and thought that there's zero chance that the Giants will ever get a taste, not even a lick, of him. As the college baseball season progressed, it's becoming clearer and clearer that he'll not be in contention with the Giants so he is off of my mind as a potential Giants pick. But at the time of the draft itself, Reynolds continues to slip in the draft in reasons unknown and it is becoming clearer and clearer that the Giants will draft him after 58 picks.
Bryan Reynolds is a prototypical Giants pick. Fits in the win-now formula as a mover right away. He's just a perfect fit all around and to get him at number 59? A clear first round talent picked midway in the 2nd round? It's just unforgivable that other teams passed up on him. To see how I consider him as a legitimate first round talent, below is my scouting report on him.
Listed in MLB.com as a 6'2" 210 lbs. guy, Reynolds fits better in the 6'4" range as he's taller than most of his teammates. His body looks like it's thin but it's well built and it's solid. I think that he'll not any more to the frame and he provides solid raw power to his offensive game already, closer to above-average. His athleticism is also solid and will not be affected if he added more muscle in his frame if he ever turns to a power hitter.
He is a switch-hitter with fluid strokes on both sides of the batters box and fairly similar stances on both sides. He stands fairly wide in the batters box with a linear to a slightly open stance that features quietness and balance. He shifts his weight back in his load and doesn't feature a leg kick. Instead, he closes out his swing by gliding his front foot forward and lifts his front heel, similar to a toe tap. He glides his front foot faster as a lefty hitter than in his right side and almost straightens his front leg but loosens it back. He does a good job of closing his body but it can lead him to be pretty exposed on the pitches down and in. The hips rotates slightly ahead before the swing and the swing itself is like a golf swing. There's some uppercut to his swing in his left side as he stiffens his front leg at the start of the swing itself that can cause some swing and miss as well but it helps create leverage when he connects. His swing on his right side is quite different as his front leg collapses when he swings. The bat speed is average to a tick above and his hands does some of the lifting especially in his right side and he exhibits his raw power fully in his swing but he can utilize his whole body in the overall swing. The follow through is very similar to a golfer especially on his left side. Because of his follow through, he is fairly slow to get out of the box after his swing.
Overall, he projects to hit for a good average in pro ball and he has improved his walk rates every year and features good patience at the plate but he got some swing and miss issues fairly because he can struggle on high velo pitching with his uppercut-ish swing and his average bat speed. I believe that it can be ironed out in pro ball. His power is more evident in his left side than his right and the home runs come mostly to his pull side but he has exhibited good gap to gap power. In college, he has managed to convert his doubles power into home run power according to his stats in the past three years and with more coaching on the swing, he can probably sit in 15 homers every year in pro ball. Nonetheless, he can barrel balls repeatedly and he takes enough walks to project him to have a close to above-average hit tool and power tool in the long run.
He only features average to just above average raw speed but he can steal bases and runs the bases well once he gets going. I expect him to lose a step once he gets older or he fills his frame even more but I can see him have a double-digit steals in the long run. He fully utilize his raw speed very well in the outfield where he takes good routes and great fielding instincts. His fielding should make him stay at center field but there are some questions in his arm strength and that could relegate him to left field. If he gets enrolled to a throwing program to help improve the arm, he'll be a long-time center fielder.
Overall, Reynolds will not flash plus tools but he uses his own tools fully and he works hard for his craft. He might not have the highest ceiling of all the college prospects but he is a grinder and there's intangibles that he possess that exceeds scouting reports. He is polished but there's still kinks in the armor to be smoothened out but he might not need a lot of time to get to the Majors.
Grades (Current): Hit 45 | Power 35 | Speed 50+ | Arm 45 | Field 55
Grades (Ceiling): Hit 50+ | Power 50+ | Speed 50+ | Arm 50 | Field 55
Grades (Probable): Hit 50+ | Power 50 | Speed 50 | Arm 45 | Field 55
I saw a link where Bryan talks about the difference in his swings here. Here are what he said in the video:
-When he bats right handed, he is looking on the inside half of the zone to pull the ball but if the ball is thrown on the outside half, he'll hit it the other way.
-As a lefty, he prefers the ball away but same approach with his righty swing.
-He sometimes struggles when changing sides during the game, causing him to be a bit stiff when he bats righty but he started the game as a lefty.
-He said that the toughest pitches to handle are changeup on both sides.
-He loves to pull the ball but he doesn't want to get around the ball, instead, he would like to stay through and take it where it's pitched.
I can't contain my excitement when I saw the possibility that Reynolds will be drafted by the Giants and honestly, my feet and hands went cold in nervousness as the Giants pick draws closer. He just checks any checkable stuff that you see on a prospect that is drafted by the Giants.
Giants needs an outfielder bad: Check
Giants love big school and big conference players: Check
Giants love good track record: Check
Giants love their Cape Cod League stars: Check
Giants love fundamentally sound and good makeup players: Check
Everybody knows that the outfield situation for the Giants is pretty dim. The starting outfielders are getting old and there are no star power in the outfield available in the farm (which should be expected of the typically great record of the big league club). Having a solid prospect like Reynolds doesn't warrant a surefire star power in the outfield but he projects to be a staple on the outfield whether in CF or in LF and he projects to stay there for quite some time. Signability shouldn't be an issue here as the Giants tend to sign their high round picks more often than not and he will be persuaded to sign by some of his Vandy Boys like Tyler Beede. And I think the persuasion has started. Actually, I think that he'll sign quickly since Vanderbilt isn't in the postseason contention and he should play in Salem-Keizer sooner than later.
What Will The Giants Do In Rounds 3-10?
Now that Bryan Reynolds pick is over, time to look at Day 2. For Rounds 3-10, here are the Giants bonus money per round:
Round 3: $625,900 Round 4: $468,700
Round 5: $350,900
Round 6: $262,700
Round 7: $197,100
Round 8: $177,400
Round 9: $165,600
Round 10: $156,600
And here a snapshot of the top available prospects in the draft from MLB.com and of interest for the San Francisco Giants:
For me, the one that I want the Giants to draft is Corbin Burnes. I would love for them to pick him in Round 2 but Bryan Reynolds happened and he's still available so Round 3 will be a nice resting place for him here. Another to consider is Jameson Fisher, the best hitter in college baseball. Hit tool's close to plus but other tools lag behind so it's going to be a tricky pick but Giants love their hit tool so he's a prospect to consider early. Heath Quinn is a power outfielder to consider too but I think teams with larger pools might snatch him early. Mikey York is another one that can be signed for a relatively cheap price but the rewards can be pretty good and Giants love injured, unknown pitching with good fastballs and York fits the bill. Zac Gallen is as solid as it gets if the Giants need another back in the rotation starter. There are other prospects that the Giants will consider but I think those prospects will be in for the Rounds 3-5. I will be asleep when Day 2 starts so I will catch up on the prospects that the Giants picked up when I woke up.
At the end of the day, the Giants once again aced the draft with their selection of Bryan Reynolds. It's almost a no-brainer choice for them I think. In a year where the money is little, the Giants swoop in and got the best bang for their little buck. I love the pick so much. Go get them, Bryan!