10 Hitters the Boston Red Sox Should Target in the 2012 MLB Draft
Over the last few seasons, the Boston Red Sox have heavily favored middle infielders early on in the draft. Some of their best prospect—from Middlebrooks to Gechhini—have all profiled as third basemen or shortstops.
With a middle infielder-heavy class, it only makes sense that that's where Boston will look in 2012.
Here's a look into some prep players the Boston Red Sox should target in the 2012 MLB draft.
The younger brother of current Boston Red Sox prospect Garin Gecchini, Gavin might have even more upside.
A shortstop from Barbe High School, Cecchini has been praised for his athleticism. He's more polished than most high school players, which will play well for him.
Cecchini has great hits tools. His power is still developing, but his strong wrists and quick swing are changing that. He posses above-average speed and the smarts to steal plenty of bases.
Cecchini's stock has been up and down, so who knows how far he will fall in the draft. If he's still there at pick 24, there's no one else Boston should go with.
With a commitment to the University Oregon, Carson Kelly has sign ability issues written all over him.
I'm not going to lie, Kelly is from my former high school, Westview High School, and that gets me excited just because it would be pretty cool. However, he's also a top-talent amateur with tons of tools.
Kelly is one of the best two way players in the draft. He mashed as an infielder, playing third and short, while dominating as Westview's ace—he missed a perfect game by one pitch this season.
Boston's never shied away from tough signers in the past, and Casey Kelly gave them experience in the two-way player department.
The biggest issue is, the new CBA puts limits on spending. If Boston wants Kelly to sign, it might force them to put a lot of their draft budget on the line.
There's a slim chance Tyler Naquin falls to the Sox, but if he does, expect them to jump all over the outfielder from Texas A&M.
Naquin possesses great hit tools and very well-developed instincts at the plate. Could profile as a stud top of the order bat who hits between .280-.300, gets on base at a .380 clip and has a lot of speed.
Defensively sound, but doesn't have a set position. Could have the athleticism to player in center, but might end up in right. Either way, he could represent a strong building block if Boston can't retain Jacoby Ellsbury.
Projected by many as one of Boston's targets in the draft, Corey Seager is the younger brother of Seattle Mariner infielder Kyle Seager.
A shortstop in high school, Seager is currently committed to Southern Carolina. However, he'd be well worth the risk.
Seager's been praised for his approach at the plate and simple—but powerful—swing. He's got a lot of upside and fits Boston's mold of filling the system with middle infielders.
Boston put a heavy focus on catcher last year—drafting Blake Swihart in the first round and Jordan Weems in the third—so what's one more?
One of the more toolsy catchers in the draft, Trahan features solid upside behind the dish. Known for a strong frame and consistent left-handed swing, Trahan is also surprisingly fast for a catcher—draws similarity to a young Russell Martin.
Defensively, has quick feet, a strong throw and a strong, durable, catcher's build. If Boston wants another catcher in the first round, they can't do much better than this kid.
Joey Gallo is a big-bodied infielder with amazing power potential. If Boston is looking to develop a powerful middle of the order bat, Gallo's a great place to start.
His swing is balanced and compact. For as big of a body as he is, Gallo's pretty athletic on the diamond. Not sure he'll win any Gold Gloves, but he won't be a disaster either.
Though Boston hasn't had great results with Lars Anderson—who has some similarities to Gallo—you can't succeed unless you keep trying.
A big-bodied shortstop out of Palm Dessert High School, Tanner Rahier reminds me of a burlier Josh Reddick.
Heralded for his raw bat speed, Rahier takes an aggressive approach at the plate. His well-loaded swing produces a lot of line drives and home runs. Rahier has the makings of a strong defender, with quick feet and cannon for an arm.
Rahier represents a possible late-round double player, as he possesses a 93 mph fastball and raw curve.
An outfielder out of Cal Poly, Haniger's stock been on a steady climb due to a solid final year of college ball—in which he's hitting .345/.438/.626 with 13 home runs and six stolen bases.
Though possibly unrefined, Haniger has all the makings of a five-tool outfielder. His power has really come on in 2012, and he shows good speed—though his base running could use a tune up.
Boston has looked a lot at toolsy outfielders over the last two season—Jackie Bradley, Jr. (2012), Bryce Brentz (2011) and Reymond Fuentes (2010)—so Haniger makes sense for them in the sandwich round.
Adam Brett Walker
Another outfielder with five-tool potential, Adam Brett Walker could give Boston some great late early round value.
The Jacksonville University outfielder enjoyed a stellar final season, hitting .343/.426/.581 with 12 home runs and 19 stolen bases in 20 attempts. Walker has the makings of a potential leadoff man, with 20-20 potential.
Projected to fall later in the sandwich rounds, Boston will either have to stretch or wait if they hope to draft Walker.
If Boston's looking for a well polished infielder, look no further than Florida Gators shortstop Nolan Fontana.
Though no one of Fontana's tools really sticks out, he's just a solid all around option. A three-year starter from the University of Florida, Fontana comes in as one of the more polished players in the draft.
He's shown great defensive skills—first player from U of F to ever be named to Rawlings gold glove team—and has a very patient approach at the plate.
If he can't develop into a full time player, at least Fontana has the makings of a solid bench player.