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2013 Indians 1st round pick: CF Clint Frazier

2013 Indians 1st round pick: CF Clint Frazier
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With their 1st round pick in the 2013 Draft the Cleveland Indians have selected center fielder Clint Frazier out of Loganville High School (GA).

Born: 09/06/1994 - Height: 5’11” - Weight: 185 - Bats: Right - Throws: Right

Pre-draft ranks:

Baseball America: 4th
Jonathan Mayo: 4th
Keith Law: 7th
Perfect Game: 4th
John Sickels: 2nd (for hitters)

Tony’s quick take: The draft went as expected as Appel, Gray, Bryant and Stewart all went off the board before the Indians pick, and the Indians followed up with the player we at the IBI predicted all day long. Frazier is a premium bat with amazing bat speed and showed off some big time power in private workouts for the Indians and other clubs. Even though  he is only a high school player, his future potential is that of a franchise player because of his incredible makeup and good skills all across the board. His all-out playstyle should be familiar to Indians fans as it is a lot like Grady Sizemore. He is only average sized, but because of some very good strength in his arms, hard and wrists he really showcases some raw power. He has an aggressive approach so may be prone to high strikeout totals, do discipline could be an ongoing issue for him.  He is raw in center field but athletic and has above average arm strength, but the Indians believe he can play there. There were other good talents available when they picked, and time may prove that others were better, but this was the right pick to make at the time of the draft because of his impact potential.

Jeff Ellis: I have been saying for a while that the national media is off on the Indians. They might have been extremely conservative in the past but times have changed. Frazier fits everything the Indians have looked for over the past four years. He plays up the middle, though he supposedly will  move to left field. He is a very good athlete, great speed, arm, and strength. He also has the grit and fire this team loves. Frazier doesn't take a minute off. He is a gym rat, who will out work you. He loves the game, and it's an obsession, maybe even an addiction to him. He has the best bat speed I have ever seen. He just turns around so quick on a ball. He was fourth on my board, and I had him mocked to the Indians. I think he is a future All Star. This is exactly the player I wanted them to get here and can't wait to see him play later this summer.  I am curious about him being listed as a third baseman, as he could do it. He has a better chance there than in center and much more valuable than he would be in left field. For the past month my comp for Frazier has been David Wright. Maybe the Indians really agree with me. End of the day they got a guy who was a near consensus number four player in this draft at the fifth pick, that is a good day.

Andrew Zajac: I love the Frazier selection. For years, the Indians were known as taking "safe" college players and in recent years, they've reversed that trend. This pick had to be between Colin Moran, Braden Shipley, and Clint Frazier. Easily, Clint Frazier was the right pick for the Tribe.

Frazier is considered a center fielder, but in my opinion, projects more as a corner outfielder, maybe right field. He has some of the quickest bat speed seen in a prospect in a long time. He plays with a ton of energy and gives 110 percent effort every time out. Frazier also has some great raw power. In a private workout, he hit 16 home runs on 24 swings. He's average to slightly above average on the bases and also has a strong arm in the outfield which could be considered as a plus tool. The biggest concern with Frazier is his physical projection. Most say that he won't add much power or strength as he adds muscle to his frame, so what you see is what you get out of Frazier. In general, he's unlikely to get much bigger than he currently is.

Frazier has the potential to be a star in this league. Peter Gammons stated that he has a "franchise personality." He won't move very fast through the system, but will quickly become one of the best prospects in the Indians farm system. Indians' fans should be very pleased with this selection.

Press release:

The Cleveland Indians today announced the selection of OF CLINT FRAZIER with the 5th overall selection in the first round of the 2013 First-Year Player Draft.

Frazier, 18, recently graduated from Loganville High School in Loganville, Georgia, where he batted .485 in his senior campaign (47-for-97) with 17 homers, 45 RBI, 56 runs scored, a .561 on-base pct and a 1.134 slugging pct in 32 games. Following the season, the 5’11” right-handed hitter was named the Gatorade National Baseball Player of the Year.

As a junior at Loganville in 2012, he hit .424 with 24 home runs, earning 2012 All-American honors from Aflac and Under Armour while leading the Loganville Red Devils to the AAAA Georgia state championship.  In all, Clint hit a school record 63 home runs throughout his prep career.   He has a verbal commit to attend the University of Georgia and is the first overall high school position player selected in the 2013 draft.  He is attending the draft at the MLB Network Studios.


Follow Tony and the Indians Baseball Insider on Twitter @TonyIBI. Also, his new book the 2014 Cleveland Indians Baseball Insider which profiles the Indians' Top 100 Prospects and more is available for sale.

User Comments

June 8, 2013 - 7:15 PM EDT
draftees don't have agents, they have advisors. if they sign with an agent, they would lose leverage because, they would lose college eligibility. Naquin was a good pick last year, so they are on a 3 year in a row solid pick streak
June 8, 2013 - 9:47 AM EDT
Bigger is almost always better, but not an absolute necessity in baseball. For the comment about not being 6'2" like Bryce Harper...I'm 5'11" and stood next to Harper when he was in AA Harrisburg. Trust me he is NOT 6'2". Actually 5'11" is probably the truth. And those other guys mentioned like Reggie, Manny and, they're not 6 ft either.
The comparisons to Mantle though...c'mon...really?? I never saw Mantle play but my grandfather did and said he was the fastest guy he ever saw from home to first. I don't think Frazier has his speed.
June 8, 2013 - 6:33 AM EDT
Size can be a factor...but it doesn't have to be. Everyone's trying to make it cut and dry...but it's not. There are great players who are 6'3", and there are great players that aren't.

There actually is grey area though. He's deserved of the #5 slot for the Indians, and his upside is unquestioned...but it's okay to look at the kid's size and think, "not prototypical." It's also okay to look at his bat speed and think, "Yeah, that's freakish."

You's actually possible to have good points on both sides...

Now it's his turn to prove that all the intangibles equal a #1 pick...size be damned...
June 8, 2013 - 6:27 AM EDT
I just want to note that saying x guy from several decades ago was small, is not really that relevant to a prospect in the modern era. You're judged as an athlete against your peers, and modern athletes are bigger (as well as faster, smarter and better equipped) on average. Size should matter least in baseball, I mean he's not an offensive lineman or anything like that, but comparing him to Mantle is disingenuous.
June 8, 2013 - 2:02 AM EDT
Andrew McCutheon is almost the exact same size as well and he is a franchise player, Soriano was 160 soaking wet when he he was bashing home runs out of Yankee Stadium. Bat speed cannot be denied and you don't have to be 6'3'' 220 to possess it.
This is what seperates baseball from the other sports.
June 7, 2013 - 1:10 PM EDT
Nobody ever mentions Tyler Naquin. He was a pretty good pick last year and is tearing up Hi A in Carolina. Three years in a row with rock solid first round picks. Lookin good Tribe
June 7, 2013 - 12:13 PM EDT
Yaz was 5'11'. As was Sheffield. Six footers include Manny, Reggie, Killebrew, Gehrig, Foxx, & Bagwell. Musial is almost the exact same size as Frazier. Size isn't going to be the problem. Let's see how he does against advanced off-speed stuff.
June 7, 2013 - 11:56 AM EDT
here is what I love about this pick Lindor a shortstop at 19 in High A Paulino at 18 and younger than Frazier is in low A Santander outfielder who is also younger than Frazier is in low A and now Frazier..... maybe we have something that will be awfully special
June 7, 2013 - 11:11 AM EDT
Went back and watched more video. I watched Mickey Mantle play- I guess you could say he's Mantle-esque in body type, speed and athletic ability, not to mention complexion. And Troy makes a point- Mays and Aaron were also similar size, but very quick and powerful thru the zone. The thing that struck me as much as anything in the videos was the consistent sound of the ball coming off his bat- that's the best video I've ever heard!
June 7, 2013 - 10:39 AM EDT
He is not...yet...that I know of.

He wasn't his "advisor" at least.
June 7, 2013 - 10:27 AM EDT
Anybody know if he is a Scott Boras client?
June 7, 2013 - 7:36 AM EDT
Size is an interesting topic these days...with the PED discussion. I do agree Troy, that size often doesn't matter, but perhaps using guys that haven't played in 20 years or more, shouldn't be the gauge. When you look at Trout at 6'2" and 230 pounds, or Bryce Harper, who's listed at the same...they are fairly prototypical..

Now...I concur with you about size not being an issue with a kid with Frazier's upside for many reasons...but it can't be excluded...

and I don't read Baseball America...whenever I can help it. I never look at it prior to drafts, and rarely worry about size until I actually see them play with my own eyes. You generally see these kids at their best in the vids, but the key--to me--is always what they do when they aren't hitting or making great plays.

I'm frustrated by a lot of talk about players that have only seen them by second and third hand sources. It's tough in baseball, because of the nature of you do what you can...

I love the draft, and I'll be taking part in the coverage tonight here at IBI...but I always take the talk about players with a grain of salt...let them make their picks...

then let me take a look at them.

Hopefully, the draftniks for the Indians have ACTUALLY WATCHED THEM over the years...I wonder about...
June 7, 2013 - 6:54 AM EDT
What is up with these concerns about his size? Henry Aaron was 6'-0 180

Willie Mays 5'-10- 170

Eric Davis weighed 165 pounds and hit 282 career homers. I could go on and on. Fraziers size is no concern whatsoever. Stop reading baseball America scouting reports.
June 7, 2013 - 6:23 AM EDT
Yes Michael, up until players sign in baseball, they often are advised by agent. Appel, of course, was advised by Boras, hence the signabity concerns.

Of course, had Appel signed with Boras officially prior to last years draft, there would have been less concern, but it's a common strategy use by many players to hold leverage over teams.
June 7, 2013 - 2:38 AM EDT
one thing I was thinking about the draft, is I don't remember how college baseball players are allowed to be represented by agents and retain their college eligibility, but basketball players forfeit eligibility when they sign with an agent. Is it that they haven't signed and are just being 'advised'? for example the signability concerns with Appel last year.
June 7, 2013 - 12:58 AM EDT
Armpit-armpit, he seems very broad.
"The Power zone" is what George Foreman called it.
He has Mickey Mantle-like strength and bat speed.
However, that build will cause two problems down the road.
1. Throwing will become increasingly difficult.
Left field is the right position for him rather than letting him become injured like Travis Hafner was.
2. Getting his bat through his swing without hitting his chest may become difficult forcing him to step in the bucket or swing like Pete Rose, Grady Sizemore, Hafner, etc., standing in the bucket then stepping towards the plate.
Great choice, all-in-all for Cleveland.
June 7, 2013 - 12:03 AM EDT
Just watching the video the kid comes off as a true baseball player. He has the instincts, the passion and the hand eye coordination. The things that have made Bryce Harper and Mike Trout franchise players and made gung ho white highschool baseball phenoms trendy picks. What he doesn't have is the size. How many under 6 foot and 185 franchise outfielders are there in the majors right now? The arm good but not great, accurate perhaps, and quick transfer, but not a cannon. I think this pick could be mired in the minors for 4 years unlike Trout and Harper who advanced very quickly. That's a little too long term from my perspective. It will be fun for us to watch him develop hopefully, but I think the pick is somewhat inappropriate for the Indians present situation.
June 6, 2013 - 10:03 PM EDT
His summer team is Team Elite......the Perfect Game WWBA is coming up in a few weeks (if not signed by then), I hope to see him play.

I think he's the best pick of the Grant era......I am a big Lindor fan and think his game will be great but I think Frazier will be the face of the franchise starting around '17.....maybe the best position player pick since Manny.
June 6, 2013 - 9:15 PM EDT
Great pick.

I suspect we revert to the standard pattern of torching the next two or three picks on pitchers who will flame out before they get to AA ball.
June 6, 2013 - 9:08 PM EDT
Great pick for the Tribe. Outside of Lindor, I have been very disappointed with our first round selections, basically since Adam Miller. This was a positive step in the right direction as we have finally selected the best player available, rather than the most signable. Kudos to the Indians staff for this one. Frazier easily slides into the top 2 on our top 10 list.

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