Trevor Gretzky, Outfielder
HT : 6'4
WT : 190
DOB : September 14, 1992 (23) in Los Angeles, California
Throws : Left
Bats : Left
School : Oaks Christian High School (Westlake, CA)
Acquired : Traded from Chicago (NL), in exchange for Matt Scioscia, March 20, 2014
Last Year's Ranking : Unranked
Trevor Gretzky is the son of hockey's greatest player, Wayne. Okay, that's out of the way. Aside from gaining his father's athleticism and desire to become the best, Trevor is a ball player, taking each step to become a future Major League outfielder. With his athleticism, and improvement over past years, Gretzky has a new opportunity to make a name for himself in the Los Angeles Angels organization, and is taking that motivation to the field with him every night.
Gretzky is one of the better all around athletes in the Angels farm system, which comes natural. He has a good frame at six-foot-four and 190 pounds, but the power hasn't translated yet. His athletic ability is shown primarily in the field, as he has adequate speed to play the corner outfield positions, and can track down near any ball. This athleticism should help him at the plate and he progresses in his career. His swing is still relatively raw.
Defensively, his speed is his biggest key to success. He makes the plays he needs to make, and makes good decisions while in the field. He has recovered from a torn labrum he suffered during his senior year of high school (four years ago), but his arm strength still needs improvement. He is nowhere near a liability though, regardless of position he plays in the outfield.
He's progressed at the plate, but is still very raw. His swing is a little harsh from the left side, with some uppercut notion to it. While with the Chicago Cubs organization, he didn't see much playing time, as a fourth outfielder at the lower levels. This led to a low amount of plate appearances, and his contact rates should improve as he sees more pitches in more at bats. When acquired, former Angels General Manager, Jerry Dipoto, saw it as "new opportunity" for both him, and Matt Scioscia. Scioscia was cut just weeks later.
Gretzky does carry a strong approach to the plate with him. He has a more than basic knowledge of the strike zone, and knows when to be aggressive and when to be conservative at the plate. This could mean a chance at becoming a leadoff hitter in the future at the minor league level, and help carry him through towards the upper levels of the minors. Watching Gretzky, you can see comfort in the box, which helps with his natural athleticism.
As for makeup off the field, it's fantastic. Gretzky can be seen after games signing baseballs, and socializing with fans. He opted out of his commitment from San Diego State, where he desired to learn from Hall of Famer, Tony Gwynn.
Gretzky has had injuries impact his baseball career, suffering from a torn labrum as he began his career, and suffering from a minor knee injury this past season. He is far from polished, but signs are pointing forward away from a raw player to a polished ball player.
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Scouting Report from Taylor Blake Ward - Senior Publisher for Scout.com
Gretzky was a two-sport athlete at Oaks Christian High School, playing football and baseball. His senior year was impacted by the shoulder injury, but didn't damper his season entirely. The young outfielder finished his senior season with a .393 bating average, one home run, and 27 RBI in 31 games as a senior. He hit for a cycle his senior year, and brought in a school record, nine-RBI, during that game.
In his debut season, with the Cubs AZL affiliate, Gretzky shined, finishing the season with a .304/.372/.330 slash. Gretzky collected hits in 16 of his final 20 games that debut season, with half being multi-hit games. Over the span, Gretzky hit .394 with a .830 OPS, scoring nine times.
Gretzky split time between Low-A and Short-Season A-Ball in his second professional season, ending the year with a .274/.300/.333 slash, as a fourth outfielder. Gretzky earned a callup in his father's native land, all while putting together an eight game stretch where he went 14-for-29 (.483) with a 1.052 OPS.
Youth caught up with Gretzky in his first year with the Angels, as he hit just .201 in Low-A as a 21-year-old. He was sent to Rookie Orem for some time in the middle of the season, where he shined once again. Gretzky collected hits in all of his 11 games with Orem, holding a .429/.455/.548 slash, with nine runs scored and seven RBI.
This past season, Gretzky saw a full season in Low-A, where he posted strong numbers for the league, caring a .242/.312/.318 slash. Though the power never came, Gretzky was able to pick up 14 extra-base hits and cut his strikeout rate to a career low 18.3%. Gretzky found his strongest run of the season between May and June, where he hit .338 over 21 games, with a .785 OPS.
Gretzky is still young enough to repeat Low-A, where he's found limited success. His numbers however, along with a strong Spring Training, could put him in High-A by 2016's beginning. He's made strides in the right direction, which could become a great thing for him, pushing him against tougher competition.
Gretzky has yet to prove if he's a future Major Leaguer or not. His athleticism can't carry him to the top but his work ethic just might. As he becomes more polished and sees more pitches, there's a chance he could fit in as a fourth outfielder at the highest level.
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Taylor Blake Ward is a Senior Publisher for Scout.com, and can be found on Twitter, @TaylorBlakeWard.