May 2, 2013
Dissecting the Draft: Clint Frazier (Player Report)
Clint Frazier | OF | Loganville HS (Loganville, GA)
Frazier in 140 characters or less:
Elite bat speed; lacks phys. projection; potential five tool talent; + offensive profile; needs reps, but above-average upside in CF; gamer.
Medium frame; filled. Wiry, quick twitch strength. Power in hands/wrists. Athletic build and moves well on the field.
Frazier is relatively new to the outfield but possesses the tools to grow into an above-average center fielder. The Georgia Bulldog commit has plus straight-line speed, tracks well, closes even better, and has steadily improved his finishing (letting fewer balls escape him as he has gains experience and comfort in center). He will need reps in order to improve his reads off the bat, but if he can clean-up his first step he should have no issues adequately covering the gaps. His aggressive approach to the game paired with his medium, albeit muscular, frame could make him a risk for injury over the course of the long pro season, but this concern is secondary to the upside inherent in a quality up-the-middle defender with plus offensive upside. The raw arm strength is an easy plus, even with some tendonitis concerns, but his accuracy comes and goes (though it is improved this spring over what he showed last summer).
Frazier has the best bat speed in the entire draft class and produces easy plus raw power in-game at the amateur level. His in-game utility will be tested against advanced arms, however, and will hinge on his ability to (1) find consistency in his path to contact, and (2) rein in his sometimes overly-aggresive approach. Currently, Frazier can collapse the back side some when gearing-up to drive the ball. When the bat comes off plane, his bat speed coupled with the slight collapse can lead him to produce top spin off contact, which will limit his carry and negatively affect his power utility. While he has a strong track record and produced very well against quality arms throughout the summer circuit, his aggressiveness this summer (against inconsistent competition) has led to more empty swings than you'd generally expect to see. There is risk in the hit tool due to the aggressive approach and violent barrel delivery but, with reps and pro instruction, Frazier's is a profile that could produce a high average and 25 plus homeruns a year, with plenty of additional doubles. He's solid out of the box and runs the bases well.
Off the field, Frazier doesn't necessarily look the part of a potential 1-1 draft prospect, but it takes very little time for him to win you over once you see him in action. His ceiling is an all-star level center fielder that fits in the top half of a first division lineup, and his skill set is varied enough that there is room for him to grow into a valuable Major League piece even if aspects of his game ultimately fall short of their lofty potential. Outside of the tools, Frazier stands out for his energetic and hard-nosed approach to the game, and should be well suited to handle th rigors of the minor league developmental arc. Highly motivated and supremely talented, he is an easy early-1st round prospect that should get strong top five overall consideration. A team willing to absorb some risk could five years from now find themselves the happy employer of a perennial all-star.
Projected position: Average to above-average center fielder on first division team
Suggested draft slot: Early-1st Round; consideration for top 5 overall