Top Prospect #48: Ken Milner

For being such a big guy, Ken Milner has a lot of speed and athleticism. The only real question about his potential is how far he'll come offensively as a pro.

At 6' 5" and 240 pounds, Ken Milner is an impressive looking player. When you get to see him put his athletic skills on display, just how much speed he can generate and how much he can do is pretty surprising. In fact, Milner is more of a speedy, singles hitter dressed in a power hitter's body.

His offensive numbers at Kansas University were solid, but not exactly astonishing. Averaging .314 over two seasons with a total 16 homeruns and 103 RBI is a nice accomplishment in college, but again, based on his size, many scouts believe there is somewhat of a concern about Milner's offensive projections for the pros.

The rest of his skills aren't in doubt. Even with his size, Milner has enough athleticism to play in center field for the Jayhawks and play the position well. At Batavia, Milner played all three outfield positions and had little trouble defensively.

Ken Milner's Career Stats

'06 Batavia 3 36 .261 70 241 28 63 10 6 4 20 55 .335

Acquired: Drafted by the Phillies in the 14th round of the 2006 Draft out of Kansas University.

Batting and Power: Offensively is where most scouts think Milner is going to struggle. Even with an aluminum bat in college, Milner didn't show a lot of power and there are doubts about how it may develop in the pros. He put up decent offensive numbers at Batavia, but much like in college, nothing overwhelming. The good news is that he was above where many thought he would be.

Baserunning and Speed: Milner hasn't stolen many bases, but he does have some speed. He gets a good jump on the basepaths and when he gets that big frame up to full speed, it's pretty impressive. He's smart on the bases and had a good stolen base percentage in college (83%) but wasn't as effective in his first pro season, stealing 57% of the bases that he attempted.

Defense: In college, Milner played center field for the Jayhawks and was a pretty good defensive center fielder. The Phillies don't really need help in center, so he'll probably become more of a corner outfielder. He's got a strong, accurate arm and gets a good jump on balls hit to his area, giving him good range.

Projection: There is a lot to like about Ken Milner. The big story will be how well he progresses offensively, but his first pro season was encouraging. He adapted to wooden bats well and put up decent numbers at Batavia. He's a bit of a project and it's very possible that he'll repeat the season in short-season ball at Williamsport, but he could be a pleasant surprise from the '06 Draft.

Comparison: There is a lot of hope that Milner could become a Jeff Conine type player, who can help a team at a few different positions and provide some power where needed. He does a lot of good things for a team and is a good guy in the clubhouse, which the Phillies love.

Philly Baseball Insider Top Stories