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Old 06-26-2018, 10:10 AM
KyWhiSoxFan KyWhiSoxFan is offline
WSI Church Elder
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Lexington, KY
Posts: 2,287

I had asked about Laz Rivera a few weeks and about his chances to make the majors, and he was discounted by some, with some saying that anyone picked outside the top 10 rounds (he was a 28th round pick) rarely make the majors so he basically had no chance.

So I looked up the scouting report on him at the time and found this about his hit tool and power.

Hit (40) Tall hitter with high back elbow; short, choppy swing with some downward plane to it; ground ball hitter with compact stroke and some occasional line drive punch. Above-average bat speed; good contact skills with ability to hit the ball to all fields. Some ability to manipulate the barrel, but more so for gap-to-gap power than anything else, particularly to right-center field with inside-out approach. Knack for putting the barrel on the ball, though, and produces surprisingly consistent barrel contact even when on the ground. Above-average pitch recognition with ability to adjust; tracks the ball well and has good hand-eye coordination. Unlikely to develop average hit tool, but enough contact and a mature approach here thatíll bring some value with development.

Power (35) More gap-to-gap power than over-the-fence pop, with speed helping his case as a line drive doubles hitter. Downward plane on swing from tall stance and high back elbow hurts power projection; above-average bat speed helps produce line drive leverage, especially on balls in the upper half of the strike zone, but unlikely to be a significant power threat barring an adjustment in swing mechanics. Lean, thin build without exceptional natural strength, but could add a bit of weight with age (to be fair, he is already 23 years old). Long term power likely to remain below average with gap-to-gap ceiling; table-setter top/bottom of the order role ahead.

I have not seen Rivera play, but it would seem that something has changed in his swing and approach (is it possible the Sox could actually develop a player and get him to improve?). His power is much better, and the fact that he has above-average bat speed is good. However, it says he has a short, choppy swing. Has anyone seen him play and is that still the case? The excerpts above were from a scouting report from Dec. 2017.