Scouts Are High On Brandon Nimmo

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Baseball Prospectus today released a host of eyewitness scouting reports on top prospects in the minors, one including Brandon Nimmo, which, in contrast to other top picks like Bubba Starling is an excellent scouting report with a good future projection on his value. The scouting report was issued by scout Jeff Moore, who saw him on three separate occasions in May, with very satisfactory remarks. He evaluates the body type and the 5 tools of Nimmo, which will be shown below.

On Nimmo’s body type:

Tall frame, strong and well-developed for a 21-year-old, but with broad shoulders that still allow for some room to fill out.

Moore rates Nimmo’s contact tool at a 55:

Classic left-handed stance with quiet hands and a slight knee bend. Features a short swing, especially for a tall player, with a slight natural uppercut. Not an ultra-quick bat but enough to handle anything but the highest velocity. Has natural ability to put the barrel on the ball and is willing to use the whole field. Hits with a line-drive approach and is extremely patient at the plate, even in RBI situations. Hit tool will play up because of patience, which helps him get into hitter’s counts.

He also rates his power at a 55:

Does not have the premium bat speed needed to generate plus power, but does have good size and strength, a slight uppercut and creates natural backspin to help the ball carry. Still learning how to drive the ball, and his in-game power is limited by his all-fields/line-drive approach.

His speed was rated at a 50:

Does not have quick acceleration but runs well under way; long-strider.

As well as his glove:

Good route runner, makes the most of his speed in the outfield. Can play adequate defense in center field or plus defense on the corners.

And Arm:

Average arm strength. Will play in center or left; below-average in right field but won’t be a liability.

And in Summation:

Nimmo is still figuring out what kind of player he is going to be. He’s built like a power hitter but approaches his at-bats like a table-setter, and his game fits that mold. While none of his traditional tools stand out, he does have one premium ability—plate discipline. He refuses to expand the strike zone, even when he has an easy run-producing opportunity. He can be an above-average hitter, but the hit tool will play up because of the plate discipline. He could be a plus on-base player. His defensive profile is still a question, but if he gets on base and provides plus defense in an outfield corner, he could start on a first-division team.

My take on this Scouting Report:

This is Nimmo in a nutshell for the time being. He’s hitting a lot of singles at the moment, but knows how to barrel the ball, but is an interesting physical specimen that figures to grow some strength, and finally figure out how to drive it.  Scouts last year were not impressed with his bat speed apparently, and there isn’t too much quickness, but this scout assures that it’s enough to generate above-average power one day, or in terms of Citi Field- a lot of doubles and an average amount of home runs. His contact value and plate discipline gives him an above-average possibility when it comes to batting average, and his on-base-percentage will be one of the best in the league, should he succeed in the Major leagues. He should hit around .270 with 35 doubles, and 18-20 homers and a high on-base percentage if playing for the Mets in his peak years.

As a runner, if he fills out, I expect him to steal less. He has been learning the base paths, and aggression, but he isn’t going to be a 20-20 type guy, so you can strike Choo off your comparison list.

In terms of defense, no, he is no Juan Lagares, and I wouldn’t unseat Lagares for Brandon Nimmo, but he can hold his own in center, and would be a great fielder in Left Field, should Lagares stay with the Mets by the time he is called up. His arm wouldn’t be adequate for right, but would likely be better than Granderson, should he still be with the Mets in the future.

Just in general, this is a great scouting report from Baseball Prospectus on Brandon Nimmo, in contrast to others, like Bubba Starling who was picked 8 picks higher than Nimmo, who received a 30 on his future hit tool, and 55 in power, but his speed and defense received the higher marks.

To me, with Baseball America recently down on him, this shows the contrast in differing opinions with scouts. Nimmo won’t have an ultimate upside of a great power hitter, or a great contact hitter, or base-stealer, but he should succeed and at the very least become a good all-around player.

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About Teddy Klein 106 Articles
Teddy Klein is a Westchester Native, Astoria Resident, and New School Grad. He is currently a Masters of Social Work student at Touro College. He's a lifelong Mets fan with a background in minor league internships for scouting in both the Dominican Summer Leagues (08') and the Brooklyn Cyclones (10') with Cape Cod Baseball League sandwiched in between. He is also the son of Time Columnist Joe Klein. Follow him on twitter @teddywklein and feel free to leave questions below. You can email him questions at TKleinMMN@gmail.com.
  • DejaVu

    This prospect keeps getting more interesting. It will be nice to see how he pans out at the higher levels. I think the “bat-speed” issue is a little concerning…I hope he can progress well at the higher minor league levels.

  • tacknaf

    AA will be his big test.

  • metsaholic

    Duda 2.

  • DanB86

    It looks to me like Nimmo might be a really good 2 hitter. His patience will give a ton of opportunities for a good lead off man to steal, and then he’ll drive them in or walk! I think at the dish he will be a a bit of a combination between a Paul Lo Duca and Shin-Sho Choo type bat while being a plus fielding outfielder. I could see him having a MLB triple slash of 280+/400/450 with about 40 doubles, 5 triples and 15 home runs and 15 stolen bases. Am I just looking at him through Orange and Blues glasses or is this a realistic ceiling?

  • Not4

    Identical! Well, ,maybe except that Nimmo is actually a solid defender at a premium defensive position (and would be above-average in a corner spot). Oh yeah, and then there’s the fact that Nimmos has good speed. And, they do have different body types and approaches. But hey, they are both lefies!

  • Not4

    Depending upon how quickly he breaks out of his current slump, we may get to see him tested at AA by next month.

  • metsaholic

    Really meaning they’re both adequate but not spectacular at their
    positions. Both are very good fits in high on base lineups, but their
    value might well be diminished without at least above average talents behind or in front of them. I like them both…but neither one is a game changer.

  • I caught a video on SNY yesterday of Nimmo talking about his training and it’s just impressive to see how he has filled in over the years.
    http://web.sny.tv/media/video.jsp?content_id=32649545&topic_id=&tcid=vpp_copy_32649545&v=3

  • metsaholic

    I just think you’re expressing that you’re just underwhelmed by the report. Let’s face it, what the Mets don’t have in their lineup and what they don’t seem to have in their system, is a game changing hitter. Someone who fans stay in their seats for, and for whom managers and pitchers stay up at night trying to figure out how to get out. The Marlins, Braves, and Nationals seem to have that kind of player. The Mets don’t, and it’s going to be very hard for them to beat those teams out in the coming years if they don’t find one.

  • Not4

    Solid piece Teddy. Thanks. I always appreciate reading pieces from
    scouts who actually see a prospect play multiple times over a few weeks
    to get a better feel for them. (One correction – Moore saw him 3 times
    in April and reported in early May. Interestingly, Nimmo was 1-3 with a
    BB and RBI in the first game, 1-3 with 2 BBs, 1 SO and 2 runs scored in
    the second game and 1-2 with 4 BBs, 2 RBI and 3 runs scored in the
    third game. Of his three hits, the first two were singles and last one
    was a double.

    Nimmo was hitting doubles at a pretty decent clip
    until he started slumping about 10 games ago. As for SBs, I still don’t
    know what to make of him. There was a good article by TH recently
    about his off-season workouts, which included working on him shortening
    his strides to pick up speed quicker. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was
    a consistent 20-30 SB guy in the majors, but in fairness, it would be
    equally unsurprising if he was a 5-10 SB guy if he continues to fill
    out.

    With his work ethic, I think the kid can out-perform his tools. (Of course, he can also still be a bust!)

  • metsaholic

    LOL! I like David Wright, but he is no longer what he once was. He has peeked offensively and seems to be some what on the back nine of a career. In a better line-up (circa 2006-7-8) he can be extremely dangerous. Wright was once a game changers. He just isn’t any more.

  • Not4

    I hear what you are saying, but disagree with the analysis. “Adequate” is a good description for Duda;s defense – around (or slightly below) average. Whereas Nimmo is a solid CFer (a premium defensive position) which in and of itself brings value. He would be an above average corner OFer. Big difference right there. As for Nimmo’s potential, I think it is FAR too early to declare him as not a game changer. While in the end, he may never make the majors (see above for my view on his floor), his ceiling is still pretty high, particularly for a CFer. Just think its wise to not make premature judgments on a 21 year old kid in A+.

  • Not4

    I do not think that is unrealistic. In fact, his ceiling could even be a
    tad higher (HRs and SBs in particular). But his floor is still a big
    question mark – he could fizzle out before making it to the big leagues.
    How quickly he comes out of his current slump and how well he does
    when promoted to AA will have a dramatic impact on his floor, but
    probably not much on his ceiling.

  • Jim

    There also is a piece today on Dilson Herrera. ETA is listed as 2016.
    His Future Grades are:
    Hit 55
    Power 40
    Baserunning/Speed 60
    Glove 50
    Arm 50

    Overall: “doesn’t have any standout baseball tools”
    “best asset is his plus bat speed”
    “could be an above-average hitter at second base with moderate power for the position”
    “Most likely is a utility role at second base and possibly in the outfield”

  • metsaholic

    Well, I’m not giving up on Nimmo. But he’s got a long, long way to go. Right now, I’m not doing back flips from reading the report. The Mets need a game changing player, or a line up of Nimmo’s at some point, if they hope to have an offense to compete with the Marlins, Braves and Nationals. I think all those teams can match the Mets in pitching, but we seem to be seasons behind in terms of dynamic offense. Where is the Mets Stanton, Freeman or Harper on the horizon?

  • BCleveland3381

    From everything I’ve read and seen on video from Nimmo, he just reminds me of John Olerud at the plate. Olerud was one of my favorite Mets, even though he was only here for a few years. I remember Olerud was interviewed once and said everyone tried to turn him into a power hitter and he exceled when teams just let him hit his line drives.

    Olerud was always a good hitter to all fields, who always knew how to take a walk. A career .295 hitter with a .398 career OBP. He averaged 18 HRs and 36 2B per season for his career. Obviously Nimmo has more speed and could add some SB to those numbers, but I really think Nimmo could end up being an Olerud-type offensive player if he lives up to his potential.

  • RyanF55

    ….and Alex68 is not! 🙂

  • Bobby O

    This guy right now seems to be a Daniel Murphy type with the stick but with much more plate discipline and BB and more HR potential. I’ll take it. However, I don’t think the Mets drafted this kid to be their future table setter in mind in the 1 or 2 hole but to be their future 3 or 5 hole hitter. I think all of us want to see more HR from this guy esp. against a higher level of pitching in a more neutral hitting environment at AA. Hopefully, like Murph he can handle both hands of pitching when he reaches the majors.

  • Not4

    There is no denying that the Mets have not done a particularly effective job of developing young-stud positional players. We have our occasional hit – like Daniel Murphy and Lagares, who could be a star in the making (or may just be a good player). But no real transformational players. But let’s face it, players like Stanton and Harper (and Trout and Pujols) do not come along very often.

    As for Nimmo, a scouting report is one thing. What Nimmo did in the month of April was another – really other-worldly, which should give some real hope for him being a really good player. It’s not hard to envision Nimmo as a Heyward type of talent, which is pretty darn good. Depending upon how quickly Nimmo snaps out of this slump, he could be in AA by next month. Depending upon his performance, we could see him with the Mets by mid- to late- 2015.

    A guy like Dom Smith could be a Freeman-type. The Mets challenged him with Savannah and although he started VERY slow, he has started to hit now. A strong year for him and he is just one year behind Nimmo – again, at a very young age.

    And while he has done little to impress offensively so far, d’Arnaud could still develop into a really solid catcher.

  • Bobby O

    I’ll also gladly take an Olerud type as the Mets future 3 hole hitter>David.

  • Captain America

    I think you draft a high upside kid there to be a mlb talent and ultimately and all star. It’s not just about drafting homers…

  • Captain America

    He is like Paul O’Neill

  • john q

    Not a Murphy type because Murphy is a hacker with no plate discipline.

    Nimmo seems more like a John Olerud type. It all depends on his defense to determine what type of player he’ll become.

  • Nimmofan25

    How do you or the Mets know what they were drafting this kid for? Never played H.S ball remember. And don’t get to high or to low on scouting reports they usually flip flop 100 times before a prospects makes the bigs. Look at Grady Sizemore that is Nimmo’s best comparison.

  • Chuck

    Did you post this on the wrong article, or is that a typo (i.e., are you identifying Not4 as Alex68)? Someone the other day identified BillPulSipher as TrevorDunn … do we get a lot of changed names after a while?

  • Nimmofan25

    The moral of the story is simple sit back and relax you never know what a prospect is until he finally gets to the bigs. No one expected Lagares who was never considered a top prospect to be a better hitter then D’arnaud at this point. So relax give these kids a break don’t get to high or to low.

  • Pedro’s Rooster

    Seems more like Choo to me, at least at the moment: great OBP, a little pop, a little speed, likely a corner OF.

    Of course, like you pointed out, there’s still a lot of growing room for him to add more skills.

  • Nimmofan25

    Could be either or who knows in time if he develops more power how about Jay Bruce.

  • Martin

    more than happy for him to take chris youngs position in 2015. send him to AA and have him crank out OBP until then.

  • Mario Gonzalez

    Imagine Jay Bruce’s power with this kids plate discipline!?!?!?

  • Mario Gonzalez

    I’ll sign up for that anytime!!!!

  • $14435385

    Choo just got $130M with a similar offensive skill set, so yes that kind of player has value. Here’s hoping it develops that way.

  • gameball

    Yeah, Cito Gaston kept after Olerud to lift the ball for more HR power, this after he hit .363 with 50 doubles, and Toronto won the WS. What more was he looking for??

    Tell you though, comparisons to John Olerud are pretty hopeful for any 21yo.

  • BCleveland3381

    I did say he could be an Olerud type player if he lives up to his potential, meaning that’s probably right around his ceiling. I think that’s fair. Do most prospects end up reaching their ceiling? Of course not, but this is the first player he reminded me of.

  • Sounds solid but, the poor bat speed bothers me. As we are in an age where many of the young arms coming up and that he will face are power arms like the ones we have in our system that can blow it past you at 95mph plus! Also Bat speed slows over time so his prime years may be shorter than most.

  • RyanF55

    Not a typo….just having fun with another commentator. He’s been really down on Nimmo so I like to poke fun when Nimmo does well. Completely childish.

  • Nimmofan25

    They said Abreu had slow bat speed he seems to be handling it pretty good so far. Oh and I don’t mean Bobby.

  • Nimmofan25

    In a way you are correct but if the Mets do add that type of player to this lineup Wright will be back to normal. And that’s why I’m passed about them not even trying to sign Abreu. You could’ve added two bats by signing just 1.

  • guest

    Lucas Duda 2.0 JK

  • Not4

    Are you seriously saying that I’m Alex68? Have you read a single one of my posts? Too funny!

  • Chuck

    No, I was asking RyanF if that’s what he was implying. I couldn’t make any sense of the comment, after I looked at all of the preceding comments. In fact, I would have been surprised if it were true, but I wanted to know what Ryan was getting at.

  • Chuck

    Last time I saw Alex comment on Nimmo (maybe a week ago?), he was getting towards a middle stance on him, essentially saying that Nimmo might be opening his (Alex’s) eyes. Maybe you missed all that?

  • Not4

    Gotcha. Gave me a good laugh anyway.

  • sarge69

    Brandon Nimmo = Mets Mike Trout! 🙂

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    My take on these Scouting reports by scouts leaked through the media at opportune times is:

    – When the player is having a GOOD season all the scouts LOVE HIM.
    – When the player is having a BAD season all the scouts HATE HIM.

    Always take these reports with a grain of salt

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    Only disparities is K’s…Olerud didnt strike out anywhere close to the rate Nimmo does.

  • Destry

    They also reported Dilson Herrera has plus bat speed and then rated his power a 40.

  • jdon48

    an Olerud who can run

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    Exactly its en vogue to bash Travis d’Arnaud now since he is playing terribly.

    And no they couldnt say Nimmos contact rate is a 60 or that he had a quick bat since that would mean they’d have to explain his equally high[compared to his BB] strike out rate.

    Bubba Starling is playing terribly which is why they are down on him.

    I stand by my original comment.

  • Nolrog

    Already? /sigh.Why Mike Trout? Why not Ty Cobb, or Willie Mays or Babe Ruth?

  • Taskmaster4450

    You are comparing a kid in A ball to a guy who finished 2nd in the MVP voting two years in a row?

    Seriously get off the sauce.

  • DejaVu

    He didn’t change his stance much. He said he’d like to be proven wrong by Nimmo, but doesn’t think he will be. But I guess thats a good as it gets from him with regards to Nimmo. It’s easier in his mind to assume Nimmo a bust.

  • Tommy Med

    #freeFlores

  • Metropolitan

    Oh great he has mediocre power…thanks Sandy because lord knows the Mets don’t need that they can just bunt every AB…oops my bad the Mets are not very good at bunting either

  • BCleveland3381

    That’s fair. I wonder how much his K rate is part of him being TOO selective at the plate as much as it is his contact rate? Im not really sure. Walking is fine, but I think taking too many pitches gets you in the habit of taking strikes, and getting yourself into bad counts which could increase K rates.
    I know being overly selective has been a criticism for Nimmo before so maybe there is a happy medium between being too selective and still being able to draw walks and not swing at pitches that aren’t strikes.