Peyton Stovall is a hard-hitting shortstop who terrorizes pitchers with his left-handed swing, but he may not remain a shortstop for long. Stovall attended Haughton High School in Louisiana, where he batted to a .512/.669/1.048 slash line in 33 games during his senior season. To add to that awesome slash line, Stovall hit 12 home runs, seven doubles, one triple, scored 50 runs, and had 39 runs batted in – all in only 84 at-bats. The six-foot-tall 180 pounds Stovall was so devastating as a senior that opposing pitchers began to pitch around him. If Stovall decides not to turn pro, he has committed to play baseball at the University of Arkansas for the Razorbacks. MLB.com lists Peyton Stovall as number 29 on its draft board for 2021.
Peyton Stovall’s main strength is his hitting. He makes hard contact to drive balls to all parts of the field. Because Stovall can smash the ball to both gaps, he is likely to rake in extra-base hits throughout his career. Peyton’s scouting report grades his hitting at 60 out of 80. Stovall is also able to accumulate walks at a high rate. In 18 circuit games in 2020, he recorded 15 walks in 65 plate appearances. During those same 18 games, Stovall’s slash line was .553/.672/.936 with three home runs, 22 runs batted in, 24 runs scored, six doubles, one triple, and two stolen bases.
Stovall’s on-base percentage is high because of his ability to both hit for average and take walks. His on-base percentage was .669 during his senior year for the Buccaneers at Haughton High School. Stovall’s on-base percentage was again over .650 during the circuit, recorded at .672. This helps to increase his on-base plus slugging percentage, which is very high. Stovall’s OPS was over a ridiculous 1.6 during his senior year at Haughton High School and the circuit games.
Peyton Stovall’s main weaknesses are his arm and his fielding. Stovall played shortstop in high school for the Buccaneers, but he is unlikely to remain there in his professional career. He lacks the range and arm strength necessary to be a shortstop at the major league level. MLB.com lists Stovall as a second baseman in its draft rankings, but it’s completely possible for a team that drafts him to move him to left field instead. At the same time, it is usually more valuable to a team to have a hitter like Peyton Stovall in a middle-infield position. So a move to second base seems like a more feasible option if Stovall can adequately make the transition.
Peyton Stovall’s smooth left-handed swing is reminiscent of Steve Finley. Steve Finley was two inches taller than Stovall, but they both keep their hands up in their stance. Both Finley and Stovall cock back slightly while the pitch is being thrown and then unleash their swing. Finley was a centerfielder who spent 19 years in the majors, with six of those years on the Arizona Diamondbacks. Finley batted to a .271/.332/.442 slash line with 304 career home runs, 449 doubles, and 1167 career runs batted in.
Steve Finley had something that Stovall may not have: the ability to steal a lot of bases at the major league level. Finley stole 320 bases in his career. Stovall did steal nine bases during his senior year, which was enough to tie him for the team lead. MLB’s scouting report grades Stovall as a 45 out of 80 for running. Other scouts list him as having slightly better speed. Stovall was recorded as running the 60-yard dash in 6.90 seconds. Time will tell whether or not Stovall’s stealing ability will transfer over to the professional level.
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