Monday, August 07, 2006

Evan Longoria is pretty darn good

Evan Longoria is amazing. No, not the model(though she ain't bad herself), the ballplayer. I was a bit upset when the Devil Rays took him with the 3rd pick in the draft. I wanted a college pitcher and felt they should have grabbed Andrew Miller or Brandon Morrow. I would have even be happy with Tim Lincecum. But instead the Rays went with the 2B/3B from Long Beach State, Evan Longoria. It wasn't that I thought Longoria wasn't any good, I just didn't feel it filled a need, while a pitcher did. Lots of draft experts said the same thing, although nearly everyone had Longoria as the best position player in the draft. Evan signed quickly and got to playing professionally very quickly. Well, it has worked out pretty well so far as he has probably been the most impressive player in the entire minor leagues since then.

Tampa started him in the New York-Penn League to get his feet wet. All he did was hit .424/.487/.879 in 33 at bats. Wow. But thats only a short season league and a polished college hitter like Evan should be able to destroy the pitching there. So they aggresively promoted him to the Visalia Oaks of the California League. High A ball. Although its a much higher scoring league, pitching is a lot better there. It should be a challenge. Not for Longoria, who cruised through the league hitting .311/.390/.544 in 90 AB. Thats just darn impressive. He did cool down as that league wore on, going 5-29 in his last 7 games in Visalia, but thats still an amazing hitting job for someone who was drafted just a couple months ago.

Tampa then continued its aggresive approach with Evan and promoted him (and fellow Visalia Oak, SS Reid Brignac) to AA Montgomery. In 3 games there he's 3-12 with a double and a homerun. He seems to just keep hitting wherever he goes, and if he can keep this up the rest of the year in Montgomery, he may enter next year as one of the top prospects in all of baseball. I don't know who he compares to yet, though his #s are starting to look similar to Scott Rolen's in the minors. Rolen is a bit taller(6'4" to 6'2" for Evan) but I think Rolen is his upside. I haven't read any scouting reports on his defense, but he played at SS mostly in college, so I imagine his D is pretty good and will be very good at the hot corner if his bat holds up in the higher levels.


At 4:31 AM, Blogger redsoxamaze said...

I have met Evan Longoria before because my high school coach used to coach him at Rio Hondo Junior College. Two years ago he came to my school to help out our team when he was still with Long Beach State. He was excellent with my team and especially with myself and our other shortstop. He taught me things that I still use today. I am recovering from knee surgery and am also thinking about Rio Hondo Junior College because I know Coach Salazar and he is a great coach. My high school coach still contacts Evan and I hope to see him and talk to him again for some advice. He is as classy as they come and as for skills i have never seen someone as great at fielding as him. And batting you already know how great he is. It was amazind watching him at Cal State Fullerton games hitting the ball on a line drive off the top of the fence. finally they found a way to stop him when they hit him in the HEAD!!!! I was pissed!!!! lol good luck in your career Evan!! James-Western Christian


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