The LA Angels made their first top ten pick since 2000 early Monday evening. They selected high school outfielder Jordon Adell, out of Kentucky.
The LA Angels were expected to draft a starting pitcher or first baseman in the first round, but decided to make a splash move by taking Adell. Not many experts agree on his ranking, with ESPN Insider Keith Law ranking him #50 on his Big Board. However, other experts believe he has the most potential out of any position players in the draft, with a handful even comparing him to Bo Jackson.
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At 18 years old, it is likely that Adell will not be seeing Anaheim anytime soon. However, he is still an exciting prospect. He is the most physically gifted player in the draft, standing at 6″3′ and weighing in at 205 pounds. His long legs translate to blazing speed on the base paths and in the field. However, his lankiness also causes an inconsistent swing.
Adell shows a solid swing motion during batting practice, but loses it once he steps into the batters box during a game. Despite these struggles with inconsistency, Adell still led the nation with 25 long balls on his way to being named Gatorade Player of the Year in the state of Kentucky. His swing still has huge potential to produce power, and that will be a big storyline throughout his development.
His defense is highlighted by his elite speed and tracking ability, but his arm is above-average as well. While he has dealt with some soreness at times, resulting in weaker throws, it is not a long-term worry as he fills out his frame and adds strength.
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in 35 games, all Adell did was hit .562 with 53 runs and 61 RBI’s. Even with his choppy and inconsistent swing, he still produced throughout high school. His swing will be the immediate focus once he reaches the minor leagues. If he can overcome that, Adell will have a long and great MLB career.
Adell also spent time pitching in high school. While it may be tempting to use him as both a hitter and pitcher, the Angels would be smart to focus on him as an outfielder. At only 18 years old, Adell is years away from Anaheim. However, he is a consistent swing away from being well worth the wait.