BRETT KINNEMAN, CORNER OUTFIELDER
|Born: August 28, 1996
Height: 6′ 1″
Drafted: 7th Round, 204th Overall, 2018
How Acquired: Draft
College: North Carolina State University
WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE
|Kinneman is a left-handed hitting outfielder with a chance for above-average or better power in the future. His power numbers took a big step forward in his draft year, with 17 homers and a .328 ISO in his junior year at NC State. At one point he was leading the NCAA in home runs, but he cooled in the second half of the season. Kinneman had some issues making contact with wood bats in the Cape Cod League in summer 2017, but cut down on his strikeouts a bit in 2018. MLB.com credits his power increase to allowing his bat speed and strength do the work, rather than trying too hard to hit homers. Overall, he hit 282/372/502 as a sophomore and 274/392/581 as a junior. MLB.com had him rated 148th and Baseball America had him rated 160th among 2018 draft prospects. He signed quickly for exactly the slot amount.
Kinneman was the starting right fielder for Morgantown. At the plate, he didn’t hit a great deal for much of the season, but finished very hot. He had an OPS of .666 at the league’s all-star break (which came about three quarters of the way through the season) and .966 after. Kinneman hit more for gap than over-the-fence power, but his overall slugging average, even with the slow start, was still 67 points above the league average. He had a reverse platoon split, with an OPS of .826 against LHPs and .721 against RHPs. Kinneman had a good walk rate but a very high K rate.
Kinneman had a rough season. He opened it at Greensboro, which wasn’t a challenging assignment for a college draftee, but he was badly overmatched, striking out in over 35% of his plate appearances. The Pirates demoted him to West Virginia in mid-June and he didn’t do any better there; he walked more, but hit for less power and still fanned in just under 40% of his plate appearances. The Pirates stuck with him, though, as he tied for second on the team in games played. He played right at Greensboro but mostly center at West Virginia, which was puzzling given that several of the team’s draftees have the potential to play center. He is a good defensive outfielder.
Kinneman is going in the wrong direction in a hurry. The Pirates will no doubt continue to be reluctant to give up on a 7th round draft pick, but with the lower levels overloaded with outfielders, it’ll be hard to justify giving him much playing time.
|2020: Minor league contract
|Signing Bonus: $215,500
MiLB Debut: 2018
MiLB FA Eligible: 2024
MLB FA Eligible:
Rule 5 Eligible: 2021
Added to 40-Man:
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
|June 5, 2018: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 7th round, 204th overall pick; signed on June 11.|