The Pittsburgh Pirates have drafted Alabama left fielder Casey Hughston in the third round of the 2015 draft. Hughston was rated as the 105th best prospect in Baseball America’s rankings, and 95th in MLB.com’s rankings. He was taken 96th overall.
Hughston is a 6′ 2″, 205 pound left-handed hitter who has some nice raw power. MLB calls it plus, and Baseball America says he can drive to all fields, but does have strikeout issues at times when he gets pull happy, and struggles against left-handers. He’s got good tools across the board, with the speed to play center field, but profiles better at a corner. The Pirates have tried players at their best possible position, so if there is a spot for him in center field, I’d expect him to play there.
Another trend here is that the Pirates have taken guys who are younger than most in their class, figuring that those players will see a big jump in development in their system that normal players would have during their junior year in college. Hughston is a sophomore, but was draft eligible because he turned 21 within 45 days of the draft. He actually turned 21 today, so this was quite a birthday for him.
Both BA and MLB say that Hughston has at least average tools across the board, with the highlight being his power. He projects as more of a fourth outfielder in the future, and might be a platoon guy if he can’t solve his issues against left-handers.