Phillies Prospect #45: Troy Hanzawa

There is always room in any organization for a wizard type shortstop. The Phillies easily made room for Troy Hanzawa, who has tons of defensive ability at shortstop and should be able to hit enough to be successful.

Acquired: Drafted by the Phillies in the 16th round of the 2008 Draft.
Bats: R  Throws: R
Height: 5' 9"  Weight: 155 pounds
Birth Date: September 12, 1985
2008 Team(s): Williamsport
Position/Games Played: SS (75)
School: San Diego State
Previous Rankings: First Ranking

Batting and Power: Troy Hanzawa has a nice, compact swing that can generate some line drives and hard-hit balls. Hitting for power is not something that Hanzawa will ever be known for, but he's at least shown consistency in his power. In his senior season at San Diego State, he hit three home runs in 257 at bats and the same number in 263 at bats in his first professional season at Williamsport. The good thing about Hanzawa is that he doesn't try to something he's not. He's willing to take walks and work pitchers and simply get on base for the guys that do have power. His swing is built to deliver hits to the gaps and he should be able to post a decent amount of doubles thanks to his swing and enough speed to stretch close plays for the extra base. Throughout his career at San Diego State, Hanzawa showed a consistent approach at the plate with good mechanics and that carried over to his time with the CrossCutters.

Troy Hanzawa will need a little help with his offensive skills, but his defense is good enough that even just an average amount of offense will be able to carry him. His high school coach once called him "the kind of guy that you would want your daughter to go out with." Which was good, since Hanzawa was dating one of his friend's daughters at the time.

Photo: Kenny Barto
Philly Baseball News

Baserunning and Speed: While he doesn't possess great speed, Hanzawa has enough to steal an occasional base and he's smart enough on the bases to not run himself into trouble. Much like with his power, Hanzawa knows his limitations and lives within them, not trying to be something that he's not. His base stealing will need a little work so he can time pitchers better and get better jumps, but that's something that can be corrected.

Defense: This is where Hanzawa will earn his keep. He's played shortstop almost since the first day that he picked up a baseball. He's got good range and sure, soft hands to make all of the routing plays. Again, consistency is the buzzword for Hanzawa's defense. If the ball is hit near him, he'll get to it, make a strong, accurate throw and get the out. While he doesn't look to be flashy, he's got enough range and skill to make highlight type plays from time to time. He's got a strong arm and can throw well even when he doesn't get to plant and set himself. Hanzawa has generally perfected going to his right to make backhand plays on balls hit in the hole.

Projection: One glaring concern about Hanzawa is his size. At 5' 9", 155 pounds, he's well on the light side. He was able to make it through his senior season at San Diego State and the short-season at Williamsport in good shape, but it's going to be interesting to see how he can  hold up to the rigors of pro ball. He is a tough kid and so far, his size hasn't really been an issue for him. The Phillies are betting that Hanzawa will be able to hit just well enough that he can rely on his defense to carry him through the system. All reports on him are that he doesn't shy away from working hard to improve and he came to Williamsport with a good attitude and approach to the game. Since he's only really versed at one position, the Phillies will either have to teach him to play at other spots to make him more versatile or he'll have to live and die as a shortstop. He put up nice numbers in his first season at Williamsport, so maybe his offense will turn out to not be a concern at all.

Comparison: There have been whispers of comparisons to Kevin Stocker, whose biggest claim to fame was being traded for Bobby Abreu. That's not to say that Hanzawa won't succeed or be better than Stocker was, but it will all rely on how his offense develops. Hanzawa has consistent, reliable skills defensively and adequate offensive skills, much like how Stocker was seen when he was coming up through the ranks.

Career Stats

3 31 .297 75 263 36 78 19 0 6 67% 18 51 .358 .403

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