With an eye still firmly on the Future, and a rare opportunity not seen here since Pat Burrell was drafted, the Philadelphia Phillies selected Mickey Moniak, OF, La Costa Canyon HS (CA) w/ the long awaited 1st pick Overall, and Kevin Gowdy RHP Santa Barbara HS(CA) the 1st selection in the 2nd round – 42 Overall, in the 2016 MLB Draft.
Moniak is a 6-foot-2, 190-pound left-handed hitting outfielder. While still in High School, where stats can be blown up a bit, he hit .476 this season with 12 triples, seven homers and 46 RBIs. He also hit for the cycle last week. Speed-wise he is a bit above average. Many scouts believe he has the potential to be a Gold Glove center fielder. The MLB player most compare him to is Christian Yelich. Moniak had committed to UCLA as is obvious on his twitter page
He played on the USA gold medal team last fall at the 2015 WBSC U-18 Baseball World Cup in Nishinomiya, Japan. MLBPipeline.com’s Jim Callis wrote “He is someone who can stay up the middle in centerfield. He’s a plus defender, he can really run and he’s one of the best hitters in the draft. He doesn’t have big-time power, but he’s also not just a slappy guy. He can hit 12-15 homers. For a high school guy, he’s very polished and provides positional value and hitting ability. You’ve got a solid regular. His floor is very high and his ceiling is very high.” Watch Moniak make a nice over the shoulder running catch here
“Collectively, we believe Mickey was the best player available in the Draft,” Phillies amateur scouting director Johnny Almaraz said in a statement. “He’s a true center fielder with incredible offensive ability and the potential to be a perennial All-Star.”
“I’m so grateful for this opportunity to be picked by the Phillies,” Moniak said on MLB Network. “I’m excited to hopefully prove the Phillies right and be honored as this No. 1 pick.”
Aside from his still raw talent is that fact the Phillies could possibly sign him for less than others in the top 5 – hopefully under the 9.01 M max for that slot. This would give them more money available for the picks down the line especially the top pick in the 2nd.
The Phils 2nd California HS pick in a row, Kevin Gowdy, is a 6-foot-4, 170 pounds, RHP who looks to already possess 3 good pitches. He shows a fastball in the low 90’s occasionally up to 94, and mixes in a hook in the upper 70’s w/ a lateral tilt and a low 80’s change/slider with fade and sink, which he’s able to throw for strikes almost at will. See video of him here. Interestingly he is also committed to UCLA and played for the USA team.
The Draft continues on Friday with Rounds 3-10. beginning at 1 p.m. ET. The Phillies have the 1st pick in every round.
* An Update to this as the Phillies announced on Monday 6/20/16 that they have come to terms w/ the #1 pick Moniak for a well under the slot 6.1M signing bonus – allotment for that pick being 9.015M. This gives them more leeway to sign the # 2 Gowdy (allotment of 1.5+M) as well as the # 3 Cole Stobbe already signed for $1,100,000 (Pick value: $813,500). *
Done deal. mickey moniak