By Sam Bush
The Phillies selected La Costa Canyon (Carlsbad, Calif.) outfielder Mickey Moniak with the first overall pick in the major league baseball draft on last night.
Here are some things you should know about him:
Height, weight: 6-2, 200
College: Signed with UCLA
Stats: Led his team with a .478 batting average, 47 RBI, 40 runs and seven homers and 12 triples. Also helped lead Team USA to a gold medal last fall at the 2015 WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup in Nishinomiya, Japan.
What he says:
- “The one thing I try to do is stay within myself. Obviously playing with all the tough competition this summer helped me. I think think playing with all the top guys, reassured me that I could play with those guys. Over the summer, there would be 50, 60 scouts at every event you went to. It’s good to have an experience like that. The main thing I’ve learned is you have to have fun. It’s called play ball, not work ball, my USA (Baseball) coach said. You have to enjoy yourself.”
- “I like to work on all aspects of my game. The main thing I’m working on now is to put on muscle and get more power in my swing.”
- “I just want to help my team win. If I have a bad at-bat. I still have to go to center field and make a good play. It definitely puts things in perspective.”
What they say:
- La Costa Canyon coach Justin Machado: “He will be a leadoff guy and a center fielder wherever he goes. His first step as a defender is amazing. He has a nose for the ball and can read swings pretty well.”
- Jim Callis, MLBPipeline.com: “He is someone who can stay up the middle in centerfield. He’s a plus defender, he can really run and he’s one of the best hitters in the draft. He doesn’t have big-time power, but he’s also not just a slappy guy. He can hit 12-15 homers. For a high school guy, he’s very polished and provides positional value and hitting ability. You’ve got a solid regular. His floor is very high and his ceiling is very high.”
- Melissa Lockard, Scout.com: “Every time scouts came out to see him, they seem to love him more. You always got the same level of play. He can do everything pretty well. There’s not one super standout tool, but he gets good marks in pretty much every category. He looks like he can stick in centerfield, hit around .300, hit double digits in home runs and stolen bases and be a good defender. He’s shown more and more than he’s got the skill set to stay in that position and provide that kind of offense.”