PP 2004 Scouting Report: OF, Tim Battle

The New York Yankees selected outfielder Tim Battle in the 3rd round of the 2003 Amateur Draft. Battle was forced to make the difficult decision of choosing between a very good college in Middle Georgia University or playing for the most prestigious organization in professional sports. In the end Battle decided to choose the latter and was set to join the Yankees organization. He signed with the Yankees and was later assigned to the their Gulf Coast affiliate. (Free Preview of Premium Content)

Vital Statistics:
Name: Tim Battle
Position: OF
DOB: September 10, 1985
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 180
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Place of Residence: Peachtree City, Georgia
How Acquired: Tim Battle was drafted by the New York Yankees in the 3rd round (94th overall) of the 2003 Draft.

Tim Battle enjoyed a spectacular amateur career at McIntosh High School and became well known as one of the greatest baseball players that ever attended the school. He put up monstrous numbers in his senior season at McIntosh while patrolling center field with the best of them. Battle hit an inflated .403 with a season home run total of 9 while driving in 22 runs as well. He also added an impressive 23 stolen bases in his senior year.

For obvious reasons, Tim battle was highly sought after by many colleges and some Major League teams as well. During the season, Battle had received feelers from several big league clubs and as it turns out the team that drafted him was discrete enough that Battle had no idea of their interest until a Yankee representative showed up at a State playoff game between McIntosh and Wayne County. This was the first instance in which the Yankee organization showed any interest in him. Battle had attended tryouts for the Atlanta Braves along with a tryout for the Yankees in the days before the draft. It seemed that in all probability, if Battle were to get drafted, it would be by Atlanta. However, Battle had already signed a letter of intent to play for the University of Middle Georgia so if he was drafted he would have to make a serious career decision that would greatly affect his future as a baseball player.

When draft day came Battle got the outcome that he least expected when he was drafted not by the Braves but by the New York Yankees. He was shocked by the draft day surprise but on the other hand, he was elated as well. Battle's high school coach at McIntosh, Toby Black, said that he deserved this opportunity because of the impressive tryout he put together in Tampa and that he was "ecstatic" for his former player. Black stated that Battle hit several balls out of the park while impressing scouts with his impressive times in the 40 yard dash.

Tim Battle eventually made the difficult decision of choosing between college or the New York Yankees by choosing to play in the Yankee organization. He was assigned to play for the Gulf Coast Yankees for the 2003 season and was told to report to camp on June 19th to begin workouts.

Despite his great high school career, this did not help Tim Battle once he arrived to play in the Gulf Coast League. There, he suffered through an all out miserable season in every aspect of the game. He batted only .208 while hitting no home runs with only 5 RBI.

All in all, the 2003 season was one to forget for Tim Battle. However, he still possesses top prospect status in the organization and scouts are predicting that he will retain that status and will pull out of his season long nosedive and produce a solid 2004 season.

Year

Team

AVG

AB

2B

HR

RBI

R

SB

BB

SO

OBP

SLG

2003

GCL Yankees

.208

106

5

0

5

14

5

7

33

.270

.255


* Stats as of 9/7/03

Batting and Power. In high school, Battle showed tremendous power combined with very good contact hitting as well. However, he showed neither of these traits during his dormant 2003 campaign. On the other hand, if he pulls himself together for 2004 he could still have the potential to produce the type of numbers that he showed he was cabable of in high school.

Base Running and Speed. Despite a terrible season with the bat in 2003, Battle still continued to flash his above average speed in the field and on the base paths as well. In 27 games with the Gulf Coast League Yankees, he stole 5 bases and in high school he stole 23 in his senior year. As many baseball people have said, speed never goes into a slump which will always work to the advantage of Tim Battle even when he is struggling at the plate.

Defense. Tim Battle has solidified himself as very solid defender in the outfield for the Yankees organization and is considered to be one of the top defensive outfielders in the system. he has loads of range due to his great speed and also has a decent arm as well.

Projection. If Battle is able to rebound from a very forgetful season of 2003 and recover to put together a solid 2004 he still is highly thought of and could go on to have a very good career. If he lives up to the extremely high expectations that scouts and coaches have pinned on him he could be a star outfielder in the major leagues that could put up 30+ home runs, 100+ RBI, .300 plus average and even 30+ stolen bases as well. These statistics would put him in the elite 30-30 class. So for the sake of the Yankee organization and for Tim Battle himself, scouts are hoping that he can live up to his very high ceiling.

ETA. 2008. Everyone must remember that Tim battle is only 18 and just out of High School and that it is very possible that 2003 was nothing more than an off season. It seems much more likely that Battle will get himself back on track in 2004 and be the player that he has the potential to be. In all probability, he will play his 2004 season with Staten Island and in Battle Creek or Trenton for 2005. The 2006 will likely be spent in Trenton for Battle and 2007 will be in Columbus. This schedule, however, can only be met if Battle recovers from his 2003 season. If he does, he could very well be playing ball in the Bronx for the 2008 season.

Outfielders

2003 Team

Mike Vento

AAA - Columbus Clippers

Mitch Jones

AA - Trenton Thunder

Kevin Reese

AA - Trenton Thunder

Kevin Thompsonn AA - Trenton Thunder
Tommy Winrow A - Tampa Yankees
Andy Brown A - Tampa Yankees
Bronson Sardinha A - Battle Creek Yankees
Rudy Guillen A - Battle Creek Yankees
Matt Carson A - Battle Creek Yankees
Erold Andrus A - Battle Creek Yankees
Melky Cabrera A - Staten Island Yankees
Edwar Gonzalez A - Staten Island Yankees
Edwin Cabrera R - GCL Yankees


Comments


As it is currently constituted, the New York Yankees outfield is as weak as it has been in recent years. Power has become a huge problem outside Sardinha and Guillen. There are, though, a decent amount of quality defensive players that the organization loves.

1. Bronson Sardinha - Moved from shortstop to left field where he continues to improve and has a good arm. Above-average runner who sprays the ball and projects to a 20-25 HR player.

2. Rudy Guillen - Collected forty-four extra-base hits (29 doubles, 4 triples, 13 homers) in 2003 while driving in 79. Excellent potential, is still young, and has the ability to hit for high average.

3. Kevin Thompson - Great defensive player who adds tons of speed (caught just 8 times in 55 attempts with the Thunder in 03‘). Doesn't strike out and is extremely patient.

4. Kevin Reese - Line drive hitter who can steal. Struggled with Columbus and was sent down to Trenton where he had a .272 average, .328 OBP, 27 steals in 32 attempts, and 13 doubles in 309 ABs. Lacks power.

5. Matt Carson - One of the top defensive players in the organization, but strikes out way too much (100 times in 432 ABs last year).

6. Mitch Jones - Hit or miss: 131 SO and 23 HR in 463 AB.

7. Jason Grove - Left-handed hitter doesn't have great power, but can hit for average.

8. Erold Andrus - Switch-hitter needs to improve judgment of the strike zone.

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