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NorCal ProCase Spotlight: OF Keith Jones


Blaine Clemmens
Northern California Director of Scouting

  

PODCAST: Northern CA ProCase

STOCKTON, CA. - The 2019 MLB Draft was completed on June 5th and on June 9th we moved our focus to the 2020 class at the Northern California ProCase. A select group of players were invited to participate in this exclusive event geared toward draft prospects and high level collegiate talents with future draft potential. Players were put through a pro-style workout with various stats/data recorded during the workouts which can be found HERE

Be sure to click on the highlighted player to see more video and notes from previous viewings at PBR events and game play from previous spring seasons. We continue our player spotlights from the event:

OF Keith Jones (Heritage)

2020 OF Keith Jones (uncommitted) turned some heads at the June 9th ProCase. He was on the 2018 Area Code Games Underclass team so he's certainly not a secret around these parts but there are times when you are on the field with a player and they just start to feel differently than when you see them from the stands. Jones is one of those players who is more impressive when you are down on a field with him vs being in the stands.

One of the important 'old school scouting' things to do (which I believe in) is shaking a player's hand, looking them in the eye, etc. Well, when meeting Jones and shaking his hand, the impression left on me was, 'whoa, those are some mitts on him and he's going to get a lot bigger and stronger.' The frame is a very solid 6-foot-2, 190-pounds (listed) and there is ample room for him to fill out, particularly his upper body. He's strong but nowhere close to what he will be when he gets man-strength in a few years. 

Jones ran a 7.09 60-yard time, which obviously is not blazing but it's an adequate time for a player who projects as a corner outfielder and the time also indicates that he's not just a big body, but he moves well with body control. The other measurable tools also graded out well for him, with an 87 mph velocity from the outfield and 89 mph exit velocity (wood bat off a tee). The arm strength was a pleasant surprise because when watching him throw in a regular pregame the arm didn't appear quite that strong, due in large part to his easy throwing motion and smooth movements.

As a corner outfielder with a L/L profile, there are some comps that start to come to mind, such as Michael Brantley, with Jones having the look of a player who could grow into a 6-foot-2, 215/220-pound player as he physically matures. Aside from a physical/profile comp, Jones' offensive tools look to have a chance to evolve beyond some players who may be presently appreciated more at this time. He swings easy, the power comes naturally and again, he's got a lot of strength he can gain. When on time he creates leverage that allows for EASY carry and projectable home run power. Jones maintained good balance in his BP swings and during the live hitting portion he carried the same mechanics into the box.

His mechanics should allow for him to develop into an all-field hitter, with above average raw power to the pull side and the ability to drive the ball the other way. Defensively he showed tools that should equip him to be at the least an average defensive outfielder with an arm that can play above average. The run tool will settle into the fair/slightly below average range but he will be an adequate runner, certainly not a detriment on the bases.

All in all, whether he goes to school or has an opportunity to sign out of high school, Jones drips of projectable offensive talents and it's conceivable that he not only develops into a legitimate MLB prospect, but also develops beyond many players who presently are a bit further along than him.

UPCOMING EVENTS

SHOWCASE STATE DATE LOCATION
Inland Empire Top Prospect ID CA 07/23 Santiago High School
Northern California Top Prospect ID CA 07/24 St. Mary's College
Junior Future Games NATIONAL 07/30 LakePoint
2019 PBR Future Games (California Invite) CA 07/31 LakePoint - Cartersville, GA
California State Games CA 08/17 Vanguard University
Kern County Prospect I.D. CA 09/07 Cal State Bakersfield
SoCal Prospect Games CA 09/14 JSerra High School
Rising Stars Showcase CA 09/21 Santiago High School


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