Scouting Prospect #67: Blake Swihart

We recently released our annual top 100 prospects list here at Scout.com, and to follow that up we will be providing team quality first-hand scouting reports on select prospects from that list over the course of the off-season. Here's a scouting report on prospect #67 from that list, Blake Swihart.

Name: Blake Swihart
Position: C
Team: Boston Red Sox
Height: 6-foot-1
Weight: 175
Bats/Throws: B/R

Events Scouted: PG National, AFLAC All-American


Physical Description

Swihart is listed at 175 pounds but already looks to be more than that. He's physically strong and has the durable frame you'd expect to have from a big league catcher. He's relatively physically mature, but he will also add significant upper body strength in the coming years as well.

Hitting

The hit tool is what may very well make Swihart a star at the next level. He shows tremendous balance and consistency from both sides of the plate and he repeats his swing mechanics. Swihart shows a willingness to use the opposite field and keeps his hands inside the ball exceptionally well. It's a rarity to see, but Swihart looks like a perennial .300 hitter at the big league level. He's as complete a switch hitter as you'll see at his age.

Power

Right now, Swihart possesses game ready type power mainly because of his advanced approach and swing mechanics. As he gets older and stronger, his power will only improve. He selects his pitches wisely and shows 60 power, particularly to the pull side. He's not quite ready to drive the ball with that type of authority to the opposite field, but the approach is there. He has some easy, natural lift and should be able to hit 25 home runs annually as a big leaguer.

Speed

Swihart runs relatively well considering his position and the fact that he's a power hitting type bat. But, it will not be his game. He's going to bulk up in the coming years and his average to slightly above average speed will probably end up being about a fringe tool when he matures. But, he is a very good athlete and his speed won't be a hindrance.

Fielding

One thing should be made clear about Blake Swihart and that's that he has more than enough skill to catch as a professional. He has plus arm strength, good agility and the quickness behind the plate to play the position at at least an average rate. Whether it's wise to keep such a quality athlete with a potentially special bat in that position is a big question, however. There is a chance Swihart even has the tools to handle a position like third base.

Summation

Position will probably become a topic of discussion with Swihart at some point. His advanced approach and mechanics at the plate should make him an instant success as a pro and the questions about position will come up. Again, those questions will come up because of his potential to play elsewhere at a high level and not because of a lack of ability behind the plate. But, he'll remain there for the foreseeable future and it will be his two sided attack at the plate that will allow him to rocket up the prospect rankings.

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