When you have the No. 3 overall pick, it’s never too soon to take a quick peek into this year’s MLB draft. This year’s draft class is loaded with excellent hitting prospects, but is relatively weak on the pitching side.
Draft Prospects You Should Know is a new series that features prospects who the White Sox could pursue in this year’s draft. As the June draft nears, we’ll return to many of these athletes and provide updates on whether their stocks are rising (or falling).
Age listed as of Day One of the Draft (June 3).
IMG Baseball Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
Baseball America 24
At first glance, Hinds seems like a right-handed version of Nolan Gorman, the first-round selection of the St. Louis Cardinals last year. His power is easily plus right now, and multiple evaluators say it could be 80-grade juice in the future. With a strong, 6´4´´, 210-pound frame, Hinds muscles balls out to all fields with ease, though in-game he’s had real swing-and-miss issues that scouts will bear down on in the spring. PerfectGame says, “Elite level power with big raw bat speed and extension through contact, can get long and around the ball at times but can launch them to where others can’t when everything comes together.”
Defensively, he’s got one of the strongest arms in the 2019 class from the left side of the infield, though he’s likely too big for shortstop already. He also has plenty of work to do in refining his glove work and improving his throwing accuracy on the run to stick at third base. While his plus arm keeps him at the hot corner for now (his arm has been clocked at 98 mph per PerfectGame), there are concerns that he may eventually be a first baseman. MLB grades his tools as follows: Power 60, Arm 50, Hit 45, Field 45, Run 40.
Hinds is verbally committed to SEC powerhouse LSU. Being a prep prospect, it’s highly unlikely the White Sox will draft Hinds with the third overall pick (they haven’t picked preps in the first round since Courtney Hawkins and Keon Barnum were selected in 2012). However, if Hinds falls to the second round, the White Sox would consider selecting him due to his vast potential and lack of system depth at the hot corner. His closest comp in the Sox organization, in regards to power and defense, is Jake Burger.