Player: Jared King
Drafted by: New York Mets (No. 146 overall)
DOB: 10/12/1991 (Age: 21)
Height/Weight: 6'1"/200 lbs
School: Kansas State
Previously Drafted: Never drafted
King has quietly improved his stock as the season has gone along, proving himself to be one of the best athletes in the Big 12 and showing real potential to stick in center field. The tools are better than the overall performance, but he is starting to show some better skills on the field.
It is a testament to the work King has done to get better in his three years at Kansas State that he is in the mix as a third- or fourth-round pick after not being drafted out of high school three years ago.
Full Scouting Report
Note: Numerical scores are on the conventional 80-point scouting scale, with the current score first and projected score second.
Very natural feel for hitting; good bat control; bat path is sound and makes a lot of solid contact; bat speed is solid and plays up thanks to minimal stride and direct approach to the ball; uses the whole field very well.
Will show some raw power before games but doesn't always translate it; contact-oriented swing and direct path won't yield big home run totals; can pepper line drives all over and use speed to get extra-base hits; better power swing from the left side, with a bit more loft at the end; could evolve into a 12-15 homer player.
Plate Discipline: 40/50
Good ability to recognize pitches; ability to let the ball travel allows him to see direction of the ball; will still get fooled by better off-speed stuff; has always been a patient hitter, willing to take walks and get in good hitter's counts.
Average speed that plays up because of his all-out approach to the game; looks quick enough to handle center field; doesn't burn down the line but can take an extra base when he wants; smart instincts could help him turn into a double-digit base stealer.
Still raw on defense, which is a little alarming for a college player; relies more on speed than feel to track down balls in the outfield; poor routes often get him in trouble; could end up in left field but value lies in his ability to handle center in the future.
Below-average arm strength limits him to left or center field; speed and limited offensive profile would make him more valuable in center; can hit a cut-off man with good accuracy but won't make throws to third base or home on his own.
MLB Player Comparison: Michael Brantley
Projection: Offense-first center fielder with ability to hit for average and get on base. Solid leadoff hitter.
MLB ETA: 2016
Chances of Signing: 80%
King would be wise to sign right now, as he is the kind of player whose stock can fall when you really start to evaluate him with an extra year. He has some skills, especially with the bat, but he doesn't do enough overall to keep him as high as he is this season.