Mets 2013 Draft Hopeful: OF Hunter Renfroe, Mississippi State
Keith Law of ESPN updated his Top 100 Draft Prospects. Here is who he projected at No. 11 where the Mets will pick in the Rule 4 Draft in June. Read the Full Rankings Here. (ESPN Insider Subscription Required)
And with the No. 11 Pick of the 2013 First Year Player Draft…
The New York Mets select:
OF HUNTER RENFROE, MISSISSIPPI STATE
Birthdate: Jan. 28, 1992
College: Mississippi State
Projected Draft Round: 1
Hitting: Present 35 – Future 55
Power: Present 70 – Future 70
Speed: Present 60 – Future 60
Fielding: Present 55 – Future 60
Arm Strength: Present 60 – Future 60
John Sickels Says:
Renfroe packs a big punch at the dish. He has massive power. He has quick wrists and a short powerful swing. He sells out for power most of the time but in his summer league runs, it has paid off. He was named Cal Ripken League MVP in both 2011 and 2012. He hit ..395 with a .581 SLG in 2011, followed by a .366 mark with an .866 SLG in 2012. Renfroe is a good athlete with above-average running speed. He also has a quality throwing arm.
Renfroe is a high-impact college bat in a draft that has few of them, with a big, athletic build and the potential for three or more plus tools, but despite the strong junior year still has a ways to go with the bat.
He can show you three plus tools on the field — power, running speed, and throwing arm — with the power more like a 70 (on the 20-80 scouting scale) and the others grading out at 60.
At 6-foot-1, 216 pounds, he already looks physically developed enough to play in the upper levels of the minors. His swing is very rotational, with a good stride into the ball and excellent follow-through to generate all of that power. He lifts his back foot off the ground at contact, which isn’t ideal since it means he’s hitting entirely off his front foot, something a few good big league hitters have done, but that most don’t.
His pitch recognition right now is a weakness, and pitchers can get him out just by changing speeds effectively. Renfroe hit just .252/.328/.374 last year with 51 strikeouts in 230 at bats after going 4-for-26 his freshman year, so while he was a known entity coming into college — Boston took him in the 31st round in 2010 — he came into this year without any strong history of performance, appearing in a second-tier summer league last year rather than on Cape Cod or in the Northwoods League.
In a deeper draft, he’d be a sandwich-round guy because of that history, as scouts and execs asked why he didn’t hit in his previous two years in the SEC, and why he didn’t play in a tougher summer league. In this year’s draft, however, he’s clearly one of the top five college bats, and offers more raw power potential than anyone other than Kris Bryant.
2013 Stats and Accolades
On May 3rd, Mississippi State’s Hunter Renfroe was named to the Golden Spikes Award midseason watch list. The award is given to the top amateur baseball player in the nation.
Renfroe leads the Bulldogs in batting average (.403), home runs (14), RBI (48), total bases (119), on-base percentage (.489) and slugging (.799). He is also tied for the team lead in doubles with 13.
What He Said
After hitting a walk-off homerun:
“It’s pure elation. It’s total joy,” he said. “You know you’re helping your team get that much closer to winning the game or won the game. It’s awesome. It’s an awesome feeling. You get chill bumps every time you talk about it or when you do it. When you run around first base, second base, it’s pretty special. I love just playing the game.”
The Grand Slam
Gotta love that Griffey-esque flair on his follow-through, bat release, the pause, and his walk to full-on homerun trot.
About the Author: Craig Lerner
I'm a data analyst and researcher for a leading news agency who loves life and is hooked on the Mets. I love following the Amateur Draft and have a particular fondness for the Mets Minor Leagues who I follow each day. Give me a cold beer, a summer day, and a Mets game, and I'm good to go.
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