BLUF: Potential for five contributing tools with up-the-middle profile and 25-homer, 25-steal potential.
The Player: Jake Marisnick (OF, Toronto Blue Jays) – Drafted in the third round by Toronto in 2009. Hit .287/.373/.459 in 35 games of 2010 debut in Gulf Coast League. Struggled as a 19-year old in the Midwest League that summer, hitting just .220 in 34 games. Returned to Lansing in 2011 and broke out with a .320/.392/.496 line with 27 doubles and 14 home runs in 118 games. Promoted to Double-A this year and is hitting .263/.349/.451 through the first half of the season.
Basis of Report: Compilation – Personal Observation (MWL 2010), Industry Contacts
Body (6-4, 205): Plus-plus body. Outstanding athlete. Looks the part when he steps off the bus. Smooth and graceful in everything he does. Long, lean body with present strength and room to add more. Well-conditioned and very well-coordinated. True MLB body.
Hit: Starts with wide base. Doesn’t need to stride, but still does and can get too wide at times. Stride changes head elevation and can impede solid contact in some instances. Still very coordinated with good hands and plus to plus-plus bat speed. Improving pitch recognition should lead to more consistent hard contact. Shows willingness to use whole field. Natural contact ability and continued evolution of approach should lead to at least plus hitting ability. Grade – 40/60
Power: Plenty of strength. Plus to plus-plus bat speed. Has ingredients for plus power potential. Swing plane leads to hard line drives to gaps rather than elevated home runs. Could still add loft to swing with maturity and increased confidence in approach. Plus raw power potential and good chance to transition that to games. Grade (raw power) – 40/60
Arm: Above-average to plus raw strength. Doesn’t always play at that level. Release can get long and accuracy comes and goes. Rushes throws. Needs to trust raw strength and just let it fly. Should have plus arm long term. Grade – 50/60
Fielding: Average CF defender right now. Has speed and instincts to track it down in the gaps. Gets good jumps to both sides, reads the ball well when hit right at him. Has made big improvements with routes over the last two years, typically taking direct routes now. Has profile to handle any OF spot but maximizes value by playing CF where he can be solid-average overall defender. Grade – 50/50
Speed: Above-average runner from home-to-first and shows better times on occasion. Appears faster with graceful, long strides in OF. Should maintain most of speed but may lose half a grade and settle as an average runner with good instincts that help speed play up. Good base stealer that should steal 20-25 bases a year. Grade – 50/50
Summation: Outstanding athlete. Great body and physical presence on the field. Chance to contribute with all five tools. Has CR profile with instincts, at least average speed and plus arm. Could handle RF as well. Will be a defensive asset regardless. Hitting ability and power still require projection but both have plus potential. Very natural coordination that gives high level of confidence in hitting projection. True plus home run power may take a while but has strength and bat speed for 30+ doubles and could max out as a 25-homer, 25 steal guy. Potential impact up-the-middle player that is a regular All-Star.
Relative Risk: High. The fact that hitting and power still require a two-grade projection leaves quite a bit of risk.
Future: Could get a taste of Double-A in 2012 and will likely spend all of 2013 season at the level. May not be ready for big league impact until late 2014 but has a chance for lengthy, impactful career in the middle of the diamond.