Today we continue to add scouting reports for players that could wind up as the Cincinnati Reds pick on Monday just after 8pm when they take the podium to announce the #2 overall selection. For past reports, you can click here. Tomorrow afternoon I will release my Top 10 draft rankings.
Scouting Jordon Adell
The Cincinnati Reds have been linked with Jordon Adell, but not as high as the #2 pick. Baseball America had him sliding down the 1st round due to bonus demands and then being taken by the Reds with the #32 selection. Playing in Louisville at Ballard High School, the Reds have been able to get plenty of looks at him (not that they don’t have scouts everywhere, but being a car ride from Cincinnati certainly doesn’t hurt).
Listed at 6′ 2″ and 195 lbs, he’s already a physical specimen at age 18. He’s also got some of the best all-around tools in the entire draft class. He’s got plus raw power and hit 25 home runs his senior season of high school. Adell is also a plus runner with a plus arm and he’s got a chance to play center field.
The two concerns with Jordon Adell revolve around questions on his hit tool and his defense. He’s struggled at times against quality pitching on the showcase circuit, though he has made some mechanical adjustments since last summers circuits. Even still, there have been times this spring where he’s been fooled by average stuff.
Defensively, all of the tools are there for him to become a quality defender that can play in center. However, he’s still quite raw when it comes to reading the ball off of the bat.
If you’re a team that believes he’s going to be able to hit for enough average to let the rest of his tools play, you’re looking at an All-Star type of player with Jordon Adell.
He finished his senior season with a .563/.687/1.438 line with 35 walks and 10 strikeouts.
Scouting JB Bukauskas
In terms of the best pure stuff, JB Bukauskas may have the best 1-2 combination in the entire draft. The North Carolina ace has a fastball that works in the mid-90’s on most days, touching 97 regularly in most starts. He couples that with a plus to plus-plus slider in the mid-to-upper 80’s.
For the season he was dominant, going 9-1 with a 2.53 ERA. In 92.2 innings pitched he allowed 62 hits, walked 37 batters and struck out 116 opposing hitters. The numbers are good, and the top two pitches are good. There are some concerns, though.
JB Bukauskas has a third pitch, a change up, which is a solid offering at times, but he doesn’t throw it much right now. His height is working against him, too. He’s listed at 6′ 0″ and for a right hander, that’s shorter than most starting pitchers. To add to that, his mechanics have plenty of effort to them and when combined with the other concerns, many teams believe he’s going to be a reliever in the long run. Some others, however, see the fastball and slider combo playing well enough to stick around as a starting pitcher.
Other Draft Notes
Jim Callis of MLB.com says that the Cincinnati Reds prefer Louisville’s Brendan McKay as a pitcher over a hitter. There’s been a lot of different opinions on this topic over the last month depending on which source you’re reading.
Callis also tweeted out yesterday that he feels confident in mocking the Reds selecting right handed pitcher Hunter Greene.
— Jim Callis (@jimcallisMLB) June 7, 2017
While this news probably doesn’t come into play for the #2 selection for the Reds, there’s some ugly news coming out of Oregon for a player that may have been up for one of their picks in the 30’s (the Reds have the #32 and #38 picks). Left handed pitcher Luke Heimlich, who has led Oregon State all season long, had his name surface this week as someone with a past felony conviction of a serious nature. I don’t want to get into the exact terminology of it on the site because I don’t want those words even being found by search engines or advertisers on this site, and be warned if they are mentioned in the comments, I will be deleting them for those same reasons. But, you can discuss the situation if you choose. Just avoid those words if you would, please.