Whitley, Schultz Headline Rays Top 30 Prospects
With baseball season upon us and full squad workouts taking place this week, we also start to see the updated prospect lists for each Major League franchise.
The Tampa Bay Rays are of particular interest to the Capital Region fan as they boast two 518 natives in their system in Niskayuna graduate Garrett Whitley and Maple Hill grad Jaime Schultz.
Whitley checks in at No. 4 on the Rays Top 30 list after being drafted No. 13 overall a year ago out of high school.
His prospect profile says: Whitley's speed is his best tool, grading as a legitimate plus. He's already made adjustments to his swing as a professional, but still needs to get shorter to the ball. The swing is explosive, though, and his strength and bat speed could produce above-average right-handed power. Whitley also has good patience for a recent prep draftee from a cold-weather state, and it showed during his pro debut when he walked in 12.8 percent of his plate appearances.
Schultz checks in at No. 19. He spent last season in AA, where he led the Southern League in strikeouts and made the all-star team. It's my estimation that he's in the majors by the end of the season, but MLB.com list his ETA in Tampa as 2017.
From his profile: Schultz has power stuff that misses bats consistently, and he finished second in the Minors last season with 11.2 strikeouts per nine innings. The right-hander will reach 98-99 mph with his fastball but usually sits in the mid 90s with considerable arm-side run, maintaining his velocity deep into starts.