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).
Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy (Manati, P.R.)
Baseball America 76
The wide variance in rankings goes to show that scouting is definitely an inexact science. Not only is Lugo a student of the Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy — he also happens to be Beltran’s nephew. A 6´1´´, 185-pound middle infielder, he will barely be 18 at the time of the draft and will thus be among its youngest players. He runs a 6.46 60-year-dash according to PerfectGame, has a very quick first step and is light on his feet, stays balanced with smooth hands and a quick transfer, and charges the ball well. He hits from a wide base with good rhythm to his swing, has a loose swing with good extension, and plenty of present bat speed.
Scouts vary as to where he will play — some insist he should remain at shortstop, while others believe a move to second or third would be better. This likely explains the discrepancy in the prospect rankings above. Lugo also had a terrific summer in the showcase circuit, which has significantly boosted his draft stock. MLB grades his hitting at 55 with all other tools (defense, arm, power, speed) at 50. There’s an excellent chance the Puerto Rico native could be considered in either the second or third round due to his pedigree and athleticism — where he lands will, of course, likely depend upon how he does this spring. He is verbally committed to Miami. His closest White Sox comps are Luis Curbelo and Lency Delgado, although Lugo may actually have a higher ceiling than either.
Here’s a video of Matthew Lugo at last year’s Perfect Game National Showcase, courtesy of 2080 Baseball:
Previously, on Draft Prospects You Should Know
C.J. Abrams, Blessed Trinity (Ga.) H.S. SS
Hunter Bishop, Arizona State OF
Cameron Cannon, Arizona 2B/3B
Matt Canterino, Rice RHSP
Matt Cronin, Arkansas LHRP
Emmanuel Dean, Servite (Calif.) H.S. OF
Tyler Dyson, Florida RHSP
Daniel Espino, Georgia Premier Academy RHSP
Dominic Fletcher, Arkansas OF
Jonathan French, Parkview (Ga.) H.S. C
Ethan Hearn, Mobile Christian (Ala.) H.S. C
Zack Hess, Louisiana State RHSP
Rece Hinds, IMG Baseball Academy (Fla.) 3B
Jason Hodges, Marist (Ill.) H.S. OF-1B
Will Holland, Auburn SS
Seth Johnson, Oregon RHSP
Jack Leiter, Delbarton (N.J.) H.S. RHSP
Nick Lodolo, TCU, LHSP
Alek Manoah, West Virginia RHSP
Erik Miller, Stanford LHSP
Chris Newell, Malvern (Pa.) Prep H.S. OF
Kyren Paris, Freedom (Calif.) H.S. SS
Quinn Priester, Cary-Grove (Ill.) H.S. RHSP
Adley Rutschman, Oregon State C
Sammy Siani, Penn Charter (Pa.) H.S. OF
Landon Sims, South Forsyth (Ga.) H.S., RHSP
Josh Smith, Louisiana State SS
Andrew Vaughn, California, 1B
Matt Wallner, Southern Miss OF
Kenyon Yovan, Oregon RHSP
Ryan Zeferjahn, Kansas RHSP