Prospect Countdown #35 : Chad Hinshaw

Grinding his way through the minor leagues, and is working his way quickly to the show, this prospect had a breakout season and we took notice quickly. Top 100 Prospect Countdown, Prospect #35, Chad Hinshaw.

Chad Hinshaw, Outfielder

HT : 6'1
WT : 205 lb.
DOB : September 10, 1990, Bloomington, IL
Throws : Right
Bats : Right
School : Illinois State University (Normal, IL)
Acquired : Drafted in 15th round () of 2013 June Draft
Stock : Rising

There's nothing like having guys who can do everything you want of them, and have them want to do more. Chad Hinshaw is a grinder, and will do whatever it takes to win. Now a lot of guys grind, and a lot of guys want to win, but not many have the talent and desire that Chad Hinshaw does.


Hinshaw has a grinder feel to him, but there's something more to his game that says he's more than just a guy who can dig and grind his way through. He has some natural tools, that come from his athleticism, that remind of us of one of those "gool 'ol boys" from the 60's and 70's, back when the game was played the right way.

Hinshaw has a simple line drive swing, which not only allows him to make good contact to the gaps, but also put the ball over the fence. He's not a small guy by any standard, but not a large guy, and makes good use of his legs and strong shoulders to create his power.

Hinshaw is well disciplined at the plate, but isn't afraid to go after a first pitch. He became more aggressive this past season against better pitching, which makes us believe he has adequate knowledge of the pitcher, and a strong mental scouting report.

With the mixture of power and discipline, comes a high strikeout rate. He doesn't have a lot of swing and miss to his game, but instead sees so many pitches and takes such hard hacks, that sometimes he overmatches himself instead of being overmatched by the pitcher.

Hinshaw has good speed, and actually, may be one of the faster prospects in the Angels farm system. He is a strong base runner and gets good jumps on the pitcher, allowing him to nab bases and maintain his speed through his entire jolt of base running.

Hinshaw has no problem laying out to dive for falling balls in the gap. He has the speed to make up room and has a great glove. He makes good jumps to the ball, and can read the fall better than most, giving him a better presence in the field as anyone. His arm is strong enough to mix with his range and fielding abilities to keep him in center field.


Hinshaw spent his time at Normal Community High School as a standout outfielder and wide receiver, kicker and safety. As a three-year receiver, kicker and safety, Hinshaw helped lead his football team to a 35-3 record, and was named to Big 12 All-Conference honors as a receiver and safety. Hinshaw hit .573 as a senior, with seven home runs, 25 RBI, and 46 runs scored, helping him be named to the All-Big 12 Conference and All-State teams, as well as the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year. Hinshaw stole 34 bases out of his 36 attempts. As a junior, Hinshaw hit .419, and hit .387 as a sophomore.

As a freshman as Illinois State, Hinshaw hit .299 with 33 RBI, and 37 runs scored. Hinshaw had 15 of his 53 games go for multiple-hits and had eight multi-RBI games. Hinshaw collected a .424 on base percentage, stole 22 bases and was hit by a pitch 15 times. Hinshaw went 2-for-3 with two RBI, two runs scored and stolen base against Evansville in the Missouri Valley Conference Championship.

Hinshaw had a slight sophomore slump, batting .244/.382/.325 over his 54 games, collecting 22 RBI and scoring 46 runs. Hinshaw stole 31 bases out of 37 attempts, and hit three triples and 10 doubles. In conference play, Hinshaw hit .667 with nine RBI, 11 runs scored, two triples, three doubles, five walks, and five stolen bases.

Hinshaw hit .248/.442/.382 with four home runs, nine doubles, 43 runs scored, and lead the team with 40 walks and 16 hit by pitch. Hinshaw did not commit an error in his 51 games, and stole 23 bases on 26 attempts. Hinshaw earned multiple honors, including an All-Missouri Valley Conference honorable mention, All-MVC Defensive-Team, MVC Scholar-Athlete First-Team, and Illinois State Doug Collins Male Student-Athlete of the Year. Hinshaw had a pair of on base streaks lasting over double digits, including an 11-game and 23-game streak. Hinshaw was the recipient of the Stephen Heaton Endowed Scholarship for the third straight season.

In his final season at Illinois State, Hinshaw hit .298/.339/.434, with 54 runs scored, 11 doubles, four triples, four home runs, and 35 RBI. Hinshaw lead the team with 33 stolen bases out of 37 attempts, and was hit by a pitch 10 times.

Promptly out the draft, Hinshaw went sent to Orem, where he picked up a .258/.412/.281 slash with 24 runs scored and eight RBI. In his first 16 games, Hinshaw collected hits in 14 and scored in 16 of his first 20 games. Hinshaw reached in all but one of his 26 games in Rookie Ball.

Hinshaw had a breakout season this past season, beginning in Low-A, where he collected a .282/.403/.461 slash with 51 runs scored and 24 RBI in 59 games. Hinshaw collected hits in 39 of his 59 games, 17 of which he had multiple hits. Hinshaw reached in all his games but seven, and reached in all of his final 16. In his final 16 games at Low-A, Hinshaw posted a .293/.430/.517 slash, with 18 runs scored, nine RBI, and 47% of hits going for extra base. From the first to third innings of games, Hinshaw posted a .341/.431/.579 slash with 22 runs scored, 12 RBI, eight doubles, two triples, three home runs, and 10 walks in 88 at bats.

Hinshaw made the leap to High-A, where he posted a .261/.333/.489 slash with 49 runs scored, 14 doubles, eight triples, 10 home runs and 46 RBI. Hinshaw reached base in 52 of his 63 games in High-A, including a 15-game stretch in mid August, where he reached base 25 times, going 20-for-63 with 18 RBI and 17 runs scored. While leading off innings, Hinshaw had a .341/.431/.682 slash in 44 at bats, with seven of his 15 hits going for extra base.

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Hinshaw has performed well at the Single-A levels, as well as a strong fall in the Arizona Fall League, which should earn him a trip to Double-A. Hinshaw will need to see stronger pitching, which he already did this fall, to really show where he stands in the Angels depth chart. Tougher pitching may see strikeout rates raise, which may be the adaptable trate the Angels need to see where he stands.

Hinshaw best suits out as a fourth outfielder, but that doesn't mean in any way he won't be an every day starter in the future. Sadly for him, the Angels are pretty well set with outfielders for awhile. His estimated time of arrival to the show, at the rate he's at, should in between the 2016 and 2017 season.

For more updates on the Los Angeles Angels, their prospects, and our Top 100 Prospects Countdown, follow us on Twitter, @AngelsOnScout.

Taylor Blake Ward is a Senior Publisher for, and can be found on Twitter, @TaylorBlakeWard.

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