Scouting Prospect #65: Javier Baez

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 #65 from that list, Javier Baez.

Name: Javier Baez
Position: Shortstop
Team: Chicago Cubs
Height: 6-foot-1
Weight: 205
Bats/Throws: R/R

Events Scouted: Perfect Game National Showcase, AFLAC All-American

Physical Description

Baez is an extra strong, stocky athlete that can do just about anything on a baseball field. He's often described as electric and his plus athleticism allows that to be the case. He's pretty physically mature and probably looks today the way he will a couple years from now.

Hitting

The bat is what's going to make Baez special. He has an advanced feel with the bat and drives the ball with authority to all parts of the park. He's willing to shoot the ball to right field or spin on an inside fastball. This is perhaps the most complete prep hitter to come out of the 2011 class. Baez is also mechanically sound and rarely expands the zone.

Power

Baez has plus bat speed and good natural lift in his stroke. He has power to the middle part of the field and could be a 25 home run threat at the next level. He hits from a strong base and creates a lot of leverage using his lower half. This is a potent power threat with plus pull power in particular.

Speed

Baez has plus speed, but it will be interesting to see if he can maintain it over the years. He may lose a step as he matures, and we'll need to see if his lower half thickens up over the years.

Fielding

He has the tools to play shortstop, but his plus arm may make him a better fit at third base as he gets a bit older. There's also been talk of putting his stocky, athletic frame and plus arm behind the plate for the long term. But, it doesn't appear that the Cubs have that in mind for him.

Summation

Baez is athletic, fast, has versatility in the field, and most importantly has a plus bat with plus power potential. He has star quality at the plate, and if he can stick at a premium position his value will continue to rise.

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