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May 22, 2014

Prospects Will Break Your Heart

What Did I Miss: Brandon Nimmo

by Jason Parks


The 2011 amateur draft was a talent smorgasbord that could satisfy the most esurient of appetites, the significance of which we are only beginning to scratch the surface of. Starting up top with Pirates’ ace Gerrit Cole, the players taken in the first round read like a who’s who for the next generation of baseball—names like Bundy, Bradley, Lindor, Baez, Fernandez, Gray, Meyer, Springer, and Stephenson. Sandwiched between these hyped warriors of the future is Brandon Nimmo, the 13th overall selection in the class, taken right after Taylor Jungmann and right before Jose Fernandez. At the time, Nimmo was a relatively unknown prospect from the relatively unknown state of Wyoming, a player without a high school team and a narrative that was more focused on his lack of playing experience than his exploits. At the time, it was a head scratcher given the talent still available on the board, and even years later the revisionist commentary has been easy to come by. Brandon Nimmo over Jose Fernandez? Really?

I first put eyes on Brandon Nimmo in the summer of 2012 in the New York-Penn League, and despite recognizing and appreciating his obvious athleticism, I didn’t see a first-division type. In August of that year, I wrote the following about Nimmo, after a long summer of watching him in Brooklyn:

“Excellent physical profile; plus athlete; very strong top half; wide/angular shoulders; fluid movements/coordination; at the plate, very high hands in setup (above shoulder blade); long journey to get into hitting position (has to drop down before going back); loses some bat control and swing efficiency; in FB counts, has a tendency to trigger early; off-speed exploitation as consequence; shows quality bat speed; can square velocity; shows ability to use all fields; good hip movements; good hands; easy pull-side power; swing has slightly elevated plane; 4 present/High-5 future power; not as sold on hit tool, which is present 3/future 5; good overall approach; seems to track pitches well; uses plus speed well, but mistake-prone with routes and angles in center; more raw athlete than instinctual defensive player; arm is average; better defensive profile in a corner (probably LF); shows all five tools; potential for average hit, average power, plus run, average arm, and average glove; possible role 5 player in majors; really nice young player with upside, but not a first-division talent.”

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Related Content:  Prospects,  Scouting,  Minor Leagues,  New York Mets

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<< Previous Article
Premium Article Draft Ten Pack: Whom W... (05/22)
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Prospects Will Break Y... (05/06)
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Prospects Will Break Y... (06/08)
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