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Draft  | Prospect Scouting Reports  | 4/15/2016

2016 MLB Draft Pack: April 15

David Rawnsley      Jheremy Brown      Andrew Krause     
Photo: Perfect Game

Once a week leading up to the 2016 MLB Draft Perfect Game will provide detailed scouting reports, and video (when available) on 10 of the top draft-eligible prospects. The first report each week will be available for free, the rest can be viewed with a PG Insider subscription. To learn more about Perfect Game's subscription packages and to sign up today please visit this link.

Previous MLB Draft Packs:

March 18Josh Lowe, Matt Manning, A.J. Puk, Nick Senzel, Mike Shawaryn, Alex Speas, Bryan Reynolds, Blake Rutherford, Taylor Trammell, Robert Tyler.
March 25: Braxton Garrett, Dakota Hudson, Connor Jones, Reggie Lawson, Kyle Lewis, Drew Mendoza, Mickey Moniak, Corey Ray, Buddy Reed, Forrest Whitley
April 1: Bryson Brigman, Zack Collins, Carlos Cortes, Jason Groome, Daulton Jefferies, Chris Okey, Delvin Perez, Nicholas Quintana, Cole Ragans, Logan Shore

April 8: Will Benson, Austin Bergner, Zack Burdi, Luis Curbelo, Zac Galen, Anfernee Grier, Zach Jackson, Nolan Jones, Riley Pint, Matt Thaiss

Prospects covered this week: Nick Banks, Ryan Boldt, Ben Bowden, Kevin Gowdy, Cooper Johnson, Charles King, Eric Lauer, Joe Rizzo, Walker Robbins, Jordan Sheffield

Nick Banks – OF

Height/Weight: 6-0/200
Bats/Throws: L/L
Birthdate: Nov. 18, 1994
College: Texas A&M
Hometown: Tomball, Texas
Projected Draft Round: 1S-2

After standing out in high school and being named a Perfect Game All-American, Nick Banks took the college baseball world by storm, playing in 57 games and hitting .327 as a true freshman for the Texas A&M Aggies in 2014. He followed up his stellar debut with an outstanding sophomore season in which he helped lead the Aggies to a tremendous 50-14 season which ended in heartbreaking fashion in the Super Regionals.

Almost immediately after hitting .364/.450/.536 for the Aggies, Banks spent part of his summer with USA Baseball’s Collegiate National team where he continued to hit at a high level, as he finished the summer 22-for-57 (.386) with three doubles and a homer. However, this spring has proved to be more of a challenge for Banks, as he hasn’t quite performed to the admittedly high bar that he had set in his first two years in College Station.

Part of the dip in performance can possibly be traced to some nagging injuries to his back that caused him to miss some games early in the spring. Perhaps as a result of the injuries, Banks hasn’t consistently shown quite the same in-game pop that he did one year ago, but he’s certainly shown flashes of it and has retained his stellar feel for using the barrel. While he may be a bit smaller than his listed 6-foot, 200-pounds, Banks is well-proportioned and has considerable, sneaky strength in both his upper and lower halves. He also owns massive forearms and quick, loose wrists, from which he’s able to generate above average bat speed. Correspondingly, while the power hasn’t manifested itself as much in games this spring, he did show off plus raw power during the batting practice rounds which I was able to attend when the Aggies visited Gainesville two weeks ago.

Banks is also a solid overall athlete and when he digs out of the batter’s box he consistently turns in average to above average times down to first base. He’s spent most of his collegiate career in right field, and he profiles well defensively there as he owns a strong throwing arm, which while inconsistent at times generally receives above average grades from evaluators.

Clearly there are a number of tools that could play at the professional level presently. This kind of “solid across the board” skill-set is what draws evaluators to Banks. But, at the same time it may also limit his perceived upside, as there isn’t a true standout tool. While he’s hit for average and got on base at a high clip in college, some concerns still remain about Banks’ aggressive approach that can get him into pitchers’ counts and a questionable ability to consistently track quality off-speed pitches. As a result, at this point Banks most likely slots in the supplemental or second round rather than the first. (AK)

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