In the weeks leading
up to the draft, Perfect Game will be providing a detailed overview
of each state in the U.S., including the District of Columbia, as
well as Canada and Puerto Rico. These overviews will list the
state's strengths, weaknesses and the players with the best tools, as
well as providing mini-scouting reports on all Group 1 and 2 players.
Wyoming State-by-State List
In Top Prospect Nimmo,
Wyoming Finally Has Someone to Get Excited About
Wyoming has been one of
the nation’s most-neglected states throughout the 46-year history
of the baseball draft, but there’s plenty to get excited about this
spring as outfielder Brandon Nimmo has positioned himself as one of
the top prospects in the country.
With the draft just
around the corner, Nimmo projects as a solid supplemental first-round
pick. Should that happen, he would become the highest draft pick ever
from Wyoming. Former University of Wyoming outfielder Bill Ewing has
held that distinction since 1976, when he was the NCAA Division I
home-run leader. Ewing was picked in the fourth round of that year’s
draft by the California Angels.
The University of Wyoming
has long since abandoned its baseball program, and with no formal
college or high-school baseball programs in the state, the flow of
meaningful baseball talent from the state has been almost
That’s why Nimmo’s
presence as an elite prospect has been widely heralded. He has
managed to make huge strides in the game, even though his high
school, Cheyenne East, doesn’t field a baseball program.
Despite his remote
Wyoming upbringing, Nimmo is actually a very polished product for his
age. Most of his exposure to the game has come while playing with
Cheyenne’s Post 6 American Legion team, which has won consecutive
state titles and nine of the last 10. Nimmo has led that team in
hitting the last three years, and batted .448-15-84 with 35 stolen
bases in 35 attempts in 2010 as Post 6 went 67-12 to set a program
record for most wins in a season.
The Post 6 team, with
Nimmo as its feature attraction, traveled in April to Arizona, where
it played a number of games on major-league spring training fields.
Nimmo’s presence gave a large numbers of scouts their first
opportunity to see him perform since last year. By the third week of
May, Nimmo had already played in 16 games of Legion competition. He
was hitting .500-1-20 with 13 extra-base hits and had nine stolen
bases in 10 attempts.
Representatives from more
than 20 big-league clubs have trekked to Wyoming this spring, not so
much to see Nimmo play, but to meet with the young outfielder and his
family face to face, to gauge his interest in the upcoming draft.
Nimmo has a college commitment to the University of Arkansas hanging
in the balance.
On the occasions they
have seen Nimmo play, scouts have been impressed with his complete
package. He has a live, athletic, projectable frame, and playable
tools across the board.
Nimmo has a sound,
fundamental approach to hitting, with a smooth, easy stroke, and
should become an accomplished hitter at the pro level. He lacks
present power, but it should be just a matter of time before he grows
into his tall, lean body for his power potential to evolve. With his
superior speed and arm strength, and defensive savvy, he profiles as
a future center fielder in the mould of ex-major league outfielder
Nimmo plays the game
extremely hard and has excellent makeup. He also is a very driven
player, and that became evident in September, 2009, when he injured
his ACL playing football and underwent reconstructive knee surgery.
With six strenuous months of rehab, he was back to normal and has
shown no ill effects from the injury since.
In Wyoming’s modest
draft history, only 12 high-school players have ever been
drafted—none higher than Michael Beaver, a righthander from Worland
High, selected in the sixth round by the Philadelphia Phillies in
Not only will Nimmo be
drafted, but there is a good chance, with all the exposure the team
has received over the last two years, that two of his Legion Post 6
teammates, outfielder Tanner Renner and catcher Cody Farrell, both
also classmates at Cheyenne East, will be picked as well, though much
later in the draft.
Wyoming in a Nutshell:
WEAKNESS: Depth of
(1-to-5 scale): 5.
PROSPECT, Wyoming Connection: Ryan Hutchison, of, Western
Kentucky University (attended high school in Gillette).
TOP 2012 PROSPECT:
No established candidate.
TOP 2012 PROSPECT: No
HIGHEST DRAFT PICKS
Bill Ewing, of, U. of Wyoming (1976, Angels/4th round).
2006 Draft: Dusty
Harvard, of, Natrona County HS, Casper (Giants/28th round).
2007 Draft: Billy
McHenry, 2b, Cheyenne HS (Rockies/50th round).
2008 Draft: No
2009 Draft: No
2010 Draft: No
TOP PROSPECTS, GROUPS
ONE and TWO
GROUP ONE (Projected
ELITE-Round Draft / Rounds 1-3)
BRANDON NIMMO, of, Cheyenne East HS, Cheyenne
package; + hitter with + stroke/approach, power will come; all tools
to excel in CF (arm, ++ speed).