Next, I’m going to look at the only first round pick throughout this series. Kyle Skipworth was drafted in 2008, and early comparisons to Joe Mauer were made. So far, things have not worked out like that though. After the jump, we’ll take a look into why his numbers are floundering.
The main thing that sticks out is easily the massive amount of strike outs. This seems to be both a contact issue, as he has a high K Swinging%, and an aggressive issue, as he has a low BB%.
The scouting report on him was that he should hit for both a high BABIP and high power, and neither of those happened either. His BABIP was below league average (.314) and he had just a paltry LD% of 15%. Now BABIP is a rather volitale stat, and hopefully he can come back next season and show the strong skill set he’s suppose to have. Power wise he wasn’t great but for an 18 year old he wasn’t terrible either. He’s certainly looking like he’ll develop into the .150-.175 ISO range, putting him at average to slightly above average power.
It currently looks like he will be forced into a platoon, though for a catcher that’s far from a bad thing as we’ve seen with the John Baker/Ronny Paulino platoon. Against left handed pitching, he had just a .068/.089/.205 line with a 0.05 BB/K. It’s a terribly, terribly small sample size at just 45 PA but he also did terribly, terribly bad in that small sample size though he did still show power.
Defensively, things weren’t too good either. He played 555 2/3rd innings (64 games) last year and allowed 73 PB+WP as well as 77 SB (16% CS%). He is very much expected to stick at catcher but he’ll have to improve there.
Now, he was also injured, which played a part (especially in defense/stolen bases). He was suffering from a hyper-extended elbow for most of the entire season before shutting it down in August. And at just 20 years of age for this coming season, he’ll have a long time to figure things out. But as of this moment, things don’t look too pretty.