Name: Chesny Young, 2B
Age: 22 (10/6/1992)
Weight: 180 pounds
How acquired: Drafted in 14th round 2014, # 409 overall, out of Mercer University. Signed June 27, 2014. Scouted by Keith Lockhart.
Status: Rule 5 eligible after 2017 season
NSR 2015 Pre-season Ranking # 44
It took him 55 games and 240 plate appearances but Chesny Young is finally recognized as the Carolina League’s new batting leader with a .347 average, the only hitter currently in the league with an average over .300.
After compiling a .315/.385/.380 slash in 28 games for South Bend, the 22-year-old was promoted to High-A in mid-May and after going 1-for-4 in his debut—his average hasn’t been in the .200s since. He introduced himself with a 12-for-25 start, including five straight multi-hit games and he’s currently in the midst of a 36-game on-base streak. Throw in hitting streaks of nine and 11 games and he’s not doing too bad for a 14th round pick that played in the Atlantic Sun Conference.
Young’s not only excelled with the bat at Myrtle Beach, he’s done it while playing a different position almost every night. He’s started 12 games at second, seven at short, 15 at third, two at first, five in left, two in right, and 12 at DH. Over his last 24 games, he hasn’t played the same position two games in a row.
“It kind of stinks for me because I don’t know exactly where I’m going to be every day so I have to be mentally and physically prepared for every position,” Young said in a recent interview with Max McKinnon of MyrtleBeachOnLine. “But I think that I’ve handled it well thus far and I think that it does raise my stock.”
Undrafted out of high school, Young hit .424 his senior year and help lead Marist High School to back-to-back Georgia 4-A titles. Earning freshman All-American honors at Mercer after hitting .367/.443/.493, Young re-wrote the school record books with 105 hits as a sophomore and became the sixth player in school history to hit over .400, batting .401. He was named A-Sun Player of the Year and a 3rd-team All-American. Young spent his junior year at third base and led the team in hitting with a 348/.430/.456 slash in 53 games.
The Cubs came calling on the third day of the draft and by the end of the month, Young was on the diamond in Arizona, making his pro debut against the A’s. After two games in the Arizona Rookie League, Young got promoted to Boise and batted .354/.466/.417 in 15 games. He concluded his first season at Kane County and continued so square up baseballs—.324/.384/.419. Appearing in three playoff games for the MWL champs, Young went 3-for-11 with four walks.
Its the second straight year Myrtle Beach manager Mark Johnson’s seen Young in action and has been impressed with his work ethic, preparation, and ability to play anywhere on the diamond.
One thing to watch for over the final six weeks of the season is if Young’s 170-pound, six-foot frame can stand up to the “grind” in his first full season. Based on his career-high five-hit game on Friday night, three off Lucas Giolito, he’s off to a good start.
While his future is likely at second base, Young may find himself on a big league roster in a few years as a “super-utility man”, especially if he can produce with the bat and continue to show up to the park with a bag full of gloves.