2014 Indians 1st round pick: OF Bradley Zimmer
With their 1st round pick (#21 overall) in the 2014 Draft the Cleveland Indians have selected outfielder Bradley Zimmer out of the University of San Francisco.
Born: 11/27/1992 – Height: 6’5” – Weight: 205 – Bats: Left – Throws: Right
Baseball America: 14
Keith Law: 12
Jeff Ellis: 6
Tony's take: This pick may not excite people and it may be more of a safe pick, but he was the highest rated player on the board and someone who could have gone much earlier in the draft. There are a lot of interesting arms still available for the Indians to take at #31 and #38 so this looks like a solid, safe pick before the Indians potentially take some gambles the rest of the night. He has bloodlines as his brother Kyle is in the Royals system and has played well for them so far. He is more of a polished player who could move quickly through the system and is a toolsy player, which is something you don’t see a lot of coming out of college. His bat and speed both grade out as above average or better and shows a good approach at the plate. He also could have at least average power if not more depending on how his frame fills out as a professional. The Indians will probably develop him as a center fielder at first because of his athleticism, speed, and strong arm, but he could settle in as a right fielder down the road.
Jeff Ellis: So you know I have to be extremely happy and fans should be too. I had him in the top 10 and so did Jim Callis. Zimmer has plus speed, I would grade it at 60 and on top of that he is 6’5” with a frame which screams power. Here is a potential five tool guy. I see a player who should have plus power, speed, and hit tool. His power needs to develop, but there are reasons a lot of people love Zimmer. He might be a college guy but the upside is there. I think he can play centerfield, and could stick there. He instantly becomes the number three prospect in this system by the time he signs. Zimmer could easily end up being the top bat from this class; worst case is an average bat in centerfield.
Press Release: Zimmer, a 6’5”, 205-pound outfielder, hit .368 with 10 doubles, 7 triples, 7 home runs and 31 RBI for the University of San Francisco Dons as a junior during the 2014 season. Zimmer, 21, walked 31 times and recorded a .461 on-base percentage. He posted a .573 slugging percentage and was 21-for-32 in stolen base attempts. The two-time All-West Coast Conference member made all 54 starts in center field and owned a .969 fielding percentage in 2014. He was named a 2014 preseason All-American selection by Louisville Slugger, Baseball America and Perfect Game USA. He is also one of 30 finalists for the Golden Spikes Award.
The La Jolla, CA native was named All-WCC during his sophomore season in 2013, hitting .320 with 7 home runs, 37 RBI and 19 stolen bases.
This draft didn't have a lot of upside hitters, so to get what could be the best hit tool in the draft at 21 is awesome.