Author Topic: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b  (Read 12438 times)

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Offline RD

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Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Topic Start: June 10, 2013, 12:43:26 AM »
Perhaps it should be follow the draftee, but let's get this started.



Drew Ward, 3b, Leedey(OK) High School. 6'3 215. Born 11.25.94
Committed to the University of Oklahoma
Selected in the 3rd round, 105th overall pick.

2012-2103 stats: 31g, .556avg, 9hr, 40rbi, 55r, 56/8 BB/K ratio

Drew Ward is a high school shortstop that will definitely shift over to 3b at the professional level. For a third baseman, he has good size and athleticism, along with a very good arm. There is some talk about him shifting to first base as he fills out, but the present ability is there to play 3b for the foreseeable future. The bat is what makes him special. He has tremendous power to all fields, to go along with an advanced feel for hitting. Despite playing against poor competition locally, he shows very good plate discipline and doesn't chase bad pitches, despite seeing very few quality pitches. He also shows the ability to drive the ball the other way.

Most of the talk around Ward stems from his age. He was originally slated to be a part of the 2014 class, but decided to enter the 2013 draft. He was widely discussed as a top five pick in the 2014 class. Despite graduating early, he still turned 18 in November of his junior year, so he is already 18.5 years old as of the draft. Still a bit old for his class.  People will question his ability now because he was always a year older than his peers so his numbers should stand out more.

Scouting reports:
http://sbb.scout.com/2/1272262.html
http://www.perfectgame.org/players/playerprofile.aspx?ID=287017

Here's an interesting article from two years ago, after his ridiculous freshman season.
http://espn.go.com/blog/high-school/baseball/tag/_/name/drew-ward
Another article from two years ago, hyping him as the potential top pick in 2014, as well as 2013 and drawing some comparisons to Bryce Harper.
http://www.perfectgame.org/articles/View.aspx?article=6617

Some video of him
Breakdown of his swing:
4 home run game:

Offline RD

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #1: June 10, 2013, 12:59:27 AM »
FWIW, my take on the situation is that the age thing is totally overblown. People are saying scouts may not have taken a close enough look at him because they didnt expect him to come out til 2014 is a crock. The talk of him declaring early was going around in February, before the season started. It was confirmed in March, early in the season. He was already well known and well followed, so scouts would definitely flock and get more in depth scouting reports if they did indeed take it for granted he still had another year in high school.

Also, saying it's difficult to gauge because of his age and competition I think is overrated. The kid's been playing all over the travel circuit for years, playing with kids his age and even older, despite what his grade classification may have been. And he has fared well - extremely well- everywhere he's been.  I understand his HS did not play against quality talent, but when he shows up to the showcase events and still drops bombs and impresses, you know his talent is legit.

Its pretty obvious the kid matured early physically, and that he has been groomed to be a big leaguer for quite some time. To a certain extent, that may limit his upside a tad bit. Think of the Sean Burroughs effect. Kid was so advanced and taught so well, that he didn't have a whole lot to learn with new coaches and a pro workout regiment.

Being that he is closer to 19 than he is 18 already, and that he has been training his body and game for years, I don't think he has a ton of physical growth left either. Certainly, there is time for more growth physically. I dont mean to imply he's done growing yet. But, I dont think he's going to end up being 240lbs by the time he reaches his peak. He's listed anywhere from 200-215, so I think he'll get into the 225 range at his peak. And I think that's great for him, because he should be able to stay at third base in that range. He is a solid athlete, with the hands, arm, and mentality for the position. Unless he can't move anymore, he should be able to stick. So those extra 20lbs will definitely help him stick defensively IMO.

Even if he does shift to first, his bat should be special. I really like that he has such an advanced approach at the plate. Think back to Michael Burgess ... he was hyped early, and he even admitted he was impatient as a senior and couldn't resist the urge to lay off pitches because he was constantly pitched around. He developed some bad habits that he couldn't ditch once he got to the professional level. Ward managed to maintain his plate discipline despite rarely seeing pitches. I think that bodes well for his ability to carry over his eye to the next level. He has also been noted for years for his ability to drive pitches the other way. He doesn't try to pull everything, which is an easy thing to do when facing inferior competition and trying to drop bombs every pitch.

There are some questions about his leg kick causing some timing issues at the plate, but I think that can be attributed to the up and down talent he faces. If you're seeing 80 for a few months, then jump up to 95 for a weekend, there will be some hitches in your timing and routine. It's something that will need to be ironed out early for him to reach his potential, but it's also something that you can reasonably expect him to develop consistency with now that he'll be facing legit talent on a daily basis.

I think the kid has the ability to be a star. His age, approach at the plate, and size could allow him to be a relatively fast riser for a HS bat.

He's the guy Im most excited about in this draft class, so let's hope he signs. He comes from a family of Sooners, so his commitment to Oklahoma cannot be ignored. It's going to take an overslot deal to get him aboard, and I think it's likely we do. But its not a given IMO. He could head to JuCo for a year or off to OU if we don't meet his demands. Here's to hoping we do, and he may be the player that pushes Zimmerman to first base in a couple years.

Offline nobleisthyname

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #2: June 10, 2013, 11:00:17 AM »
Thanks for the analysis RD. He was my favorite top pick from the draft as well. Looking forward to how he will progress.

Offline Slateman

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #3: June 10, 2013, 11:20:34 AM »
Call him up

Offline GNatsNoMore

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #4: June 11, 2013, 04:56:39 PM »
Call him up

Great idea!  Play him at 3b, shift Zim to first, trade LaRoche for a starting pitcher...  :panic:  :panic: :panic:









Well, maybe we should sign him first.

Offline zoom

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #5: June 11, 2013, 07:40:30 PM »
i wonder if Rizzo is giving it (signing Ward) an honest go.  With as many college pitchers that we selected, there seems like there would be a couple of signings by now.  Rizzo might be holding off until he finds out if Ward will sign and how much money is left over.   

Offline RD

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #6: June 15, 2013, 01:50:11 AM »
http://www.thedailyelkcitian.com/elk-city-oklahoma-area-sports-schools/2518-drew-ward-signs-with-washington-nationals

He's signed and in Florida reafy to work. Glad to get him in early. All the ABs a kid can get early, the better.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #7: June 15, 2013, 12:38:13 PM »
Scouting report on him?
gata - check the first post for links.  RD's evaluation is pretty thorough, too.

http://www.thedailyelkcitian.com/elk-city-oklahoma-area-sports-schools/2518-drew-ward-signs-with-washington-nationals

He's signed and in Florida reafy to work. Glad to get him in early. All the ABs a kid can get early, the better.
so far, a google for "Drew Ward Baseball" does not turn up the amount.  Looked like the Nats had saved $414K on signings from their draft allocation pool before this signing.  Allocation for #105 pick $491K, but I'm guessing he got the allocation and most of the budget pool.

Offline JCA-CrystalCity

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #8: June 15, 2013, 05:49:32 PM »
$850K, per Jim Callis's twitter.

Picked up by MLBTR.
http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2013/06/nationals-sign-drew-ward.html

That is $359K over slot, but leaves the team about $50 -55K under allocation for Pivetta and the other unsigned pick in the top 10.

Offline zoom

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #9: June 15, 2013, 10:59:28 PM »
did we go over enough to lose a draft pick? 

Offline zimm_da_kid

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #10: June 16, 2013, 12:06:44 AM »
did we go over enough to lose a draft pick? 

we're still under allotment overall so no.

Offline BrandonK

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #11: June 16, 2013, 03:54:32 AM »
we're still under allotment overall so no.

Sign Karsten Whitson

Offline zimm_da_kid

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #12: June 16, 2013, 02:33:05 PM »
Sign Karsten Whitson

if we could get up to the $750,000+ range then I think we might have a chance.

Offline Glockypoo

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #13: June 21, 2013, 09:34:43 AM »
Drew has been assigned to the GCL. Can't wait to see how he does.

Opening Day today at 12 against the Mets.

Raudy Read will be making his mainland debut, too. Excited about him as well.

Offline HalfSmokes

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #14: June 21, 2013, 10:16:22 AM »
so how did a top five pick slip to the third round? I can see age dropping him within a round, or maybe even a round, but from 5 to round 3?

Offline houston-nat

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #15: June 21, 2013, 10:24:45 AM »
so how did a top five pick slip to the third round? I can see age dropping him within a round, or maybe even a round, but from 5 to round 3?
The OP says he was considered a potential top five pick next year... but I don't know why declaring early would make you less popular.

Offline TigerFan

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #16: June 21, 2013, 12:45:45 PM »
Drew Ward is starting at 3b and hitting third in the lineup.  His first professional AB is an RBI double!  Later he scores in the first inning.  Hopefully he is the real deal. 

Offline Lintyfresh85

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #17: June 21, 2013, 12:48:10 PM »
Followed by a 2B in his second AB as well.

Offline TigerFan

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #18: June 21, 2013, 12:52:43 PM »
Followed by a 2B in his second AB as well.

Another RBI double.  Wow, if nothing else an impressive debut. 

Also has an E. 

Offline TigerFan

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #19: June 21, 2013, 01:32:26 PM »
3-3 with 3 RBI. 

Offline zimm_da_kid

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #20: June 21, 2013, 01:34:59 PM »
Stud

Offline Slateman

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #21: June 21, 2013, 01:55:35 PM »
Call him up

Offline Lintyfresh85

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #22: June 21, 2013, 02:22:20 PM »
He made an out. Cut him.

Offline nobleisthyname

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #23: June 21, 2013, 05:44:41 PM »
I love it when players sign early. It's amazing he's already playing rookie ball in June.

Offline RD

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Re: Follow the Prospects: Drew Ward, 3b
« Reply #24: June 24, 2013, 10:31:53 PM »
0-2 each of the past two games, but has walked 4 times in them. K'd twice as well. Have to like the patience early on.