With the 2020 draft in the rearview mirror, everybody now wonders when baseball will actually start. Cincinnati Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer has been one of the prominent voices all offseason until now. In the meantime, here is the recap on the Reds draft choices.
Cincinnati Reds 2020 Draft Recap
Round 1, Pick 12: Austin Hendrick OF, West Allegheny HS (PA.)
In the first round, the Reds went unconventional for their taste. Usually a ball club to take polished college talent, they went the high school route. Their selection was Austin Hendrick out of West Allegheny (PA.) HS. Hendrick is 6’1″ 191 pounds and plays the outfield.
He is also a sweet swinging lefty, something Cincinnati should be used to having by now. His tools are undoubtedly there, and they show well in most cases, but sometimes there’s a lot of swing and miss to his game. All in all Cincy nailed this pick by taking best available.
Round 2, Pick 48: Christian Roa RHP, Texas A&M
While analysts compared Hendrick to the likes of having Mike Trout like tools hiding under the surface, Cincinnati went familiar in the second round. They selected RHP Christian Roa out of Texas A&M. Roa and his teammate Asa Lacy had formed a formidable 1-2 punch at top of the Aggies’ rotation.
Roa finished his 2019 season with a 3.56 ERA and 46 strikeouts in 48 innings pitched. In the shortened 2020 season, he had already gathered 35 strikeouts through 20 innings of work. He will be a good addition to an already stacked minor league pitching pool in Cincinnati.
Round 2, Pick 65: Jackson Miller C, JW Mitchell HS (FL)
The left-handed hitting catcher has good defensive skills behind the plate and solid pop to his bat. With the Reds having Tyler Stephenson waiting in the wings though, Miller will most likely be a project for years to come. With a smooth swing, and good defensive skills, don’t be surprised if this turns into a good pick for Cincy here.
Round 3, Pick 84: Bryce Bonnin RHP, Texas Tech
The third round pick for Cincinnati was another pitcher. Bryce Bonnin was a junior out of Texas Tech and the 121st-ranked prospect by MLB.com. In three years in college, Bonnin compiled a career 4.06 ERA and 108 strikeouts in 97.2 innings.
Bonnin averaged 96 MPH on the fastball, and has some decent off speed stuff, but he needs to reign in his control. In his 97.2 innings pitched, he walked 63 batters. He will probably top out as a bullpen arm or bottom of the rotation starter.
Round 4, Pick 113: Mac Wainwright OF, St. Edwards HS (OH)
Mac Wainwright is an outfielder out of Lakewood St. Edwards High School in Northeast Ohio. Wainwright said he grew up watching the Reds, Cleveland Indians and Detroit Tigers, so this is pretty cool that he was selected by a team in his home state. He was not ranked by MLB.com, but when he debuted in the PBR Showcase, he had mid-90s exit velo off the bat, and mid-80s exit velocity from his outfield position.
Flash forward to the 2020 showcase in February, he added ten-plus MPH to his exit velo clocking in at 106 MPH. His outfield exit velocity was also very improved clocking at 93 MPH. A lot of scouts and analysts think this could be the steal of the draft for the Reds.
Round 5, Pick 143: Joe Boyle RHP, Notre Dame
For their final pick in this years’ abbreviated draft, Cincinnati went the pitching route once again. This time they selected Joe Boyle out of Notre Dame, the 165th-ranked prospect according to MLB.com. Boyle is a giant, standing at 6’7″ 240 lbs. Coinciding with his massive size, he has the fastball to show it. There have been multiple times that his fastball has topped at 102 MPH. With his hard throwing, also comes some control issues. In 2019, he had 27 walks in 23.2 innings pitched, and in the abbreviated year, he had 13 walks in 8.1 innings. He will be a project, but will pay big dividends if it works out.
This year was weird for sure, with the draft being five rounds. The Reds definitely made the most of it, selecting good upside talent. If the past years are any indicator, Cincinnati may have found themselves one or two steals this year as well. It is now the period where all undrafted players can sign wherever they’re offered. Be on the lookout, as the Reds might find some diamonds in that rough as well.
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