By The Baseball Beginnings Guy
June 26, 2010
I probably liked ASU shortstop Drew Maggi a little bit better than the 15th round, where the Pittsburgh Pirates took him in the 2010 draft. I’ve had two looks at Maggi, one last summer with wood and one this spring with metal. I’m not saying I had him in the first round, but I certainly saw a guy who had enough tools to make a run at the big leagues in the coming years, and not just an organizational filler, so long as he made some adjustments and gained some strength. Here’s a look, and then we’ll break him down a bit.
Maggi, listed at 6-0, 172, has average size, with long and thin legs. He doesn’t have big, strong and broad shoulders, but he has lanky limbs. In all likelihood he will need to get stronger as he progresses, and the frame should suggest at least modest physical projection. Maggi had a very handsy swing, but I’m not saying he’s a purely opposite field hitter who can’t drive the ball. On the contrary, he swings hard and finishes with both hands and shows a compact stroke. He generally repeats his swing each time I see him, occasionally there is an upper cut, and everyone with some pop has at least some upper cut. Sometimes there is a little wrap there.
Defensively, Maggi was agile and nimble, a glider with soft steps. I thought he was a little short to his right and thought he lacked the premium shortstop arm, but will make the routine throw accurately every time. I saw him get beaten against 97 fastballs from Gerrit Cole, but that’s more of a tip of the cap to Cole than it is bury the guy. I wanted more contact, but I wasn’t willing to write off Maggi for one Friday night. The reason? I saw him last summer with wood. He was comfortable. He was confident. He let his swing be itself. And he sprayed line drives.
In his spring BP, I liked Maggi. He went gap-to-gap and showed a hint of pull power. He’s a solid average runner in first base and base stealing times. He has soft hands and has the makings of a contact-oriented middle infielder with solid average speed, occasional pop, great athletic actions defensively, and enough arm to handle the routine. All of that, for me, would have been better than 15th round. He has the makings of a blue-collar pro without the big flashy skills, but the instincts of a natural middle infielder with bat speed and contact abilities.