2012 Draft: Joey Gallo

Rafael Soriano: Closer
Yankees pursuing Taiwanese shortstop Tzu-Wei Lin

The 2012 amateur draft is only five days away, so between now and then I’m going to highlight some prospects individually rather than lump them together into larger posts.

Joey Gallo | 3B/RHP

Background
A two-way star and Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, Gallo hit the tenth longest homerun in Petco Park history while participating in a wood bat showcase event last summer.

Scouting Report
Listed at 6-foot-4 and 200 lbs., Gallo is legitimate first round talent both on the mound and as a position player. He prefers to hit and went to great lengths to keep his pitching schedule a secret so scouts couldn’t see him this spring. Gallo has tremendous raw power from the left side, arguably the most in the draft, and he’s capable of hitting the ball out to all fields. He doesn’t make enough contact however, and there are real concerns about his ability to handle pro offspeed pitches. Although he’s athletic for his size, he’ll likely have to move across the diamond to first base because his hands and footwork aren’t good.

On the mound, Gallo runs his fastball up to 98 and will sit in the mid-90s. His power slider needs work but flashes swing-and-miss-ability on its best days. Like most high schoolers, he needs to improve his overall command and changeup.

Miscellany
Keith Law (#23), Baseball America (#33), and MLB.com (#33) all agree that Gallo is a back-half of the first round talent as a hitter, though he might have been in the conversation for the first overall pick had he focused on pitching this spring. It’s worth noting that Law had the Yankees selecting Gallo with their first rounder (#30 overall) in his latest mock draft, so there’s some interest there. The contact issues will be overlooked because power is so hard to find, plus he’ll always have the fallback option of returning to the mound.

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Rafael Soriano: Closer
Yankees pursuing Taiwanese shortstop Tzu-Wei Lin
  • SEHumphrey

    Are you sure it isn’t pronounced Jerry Gallow?

    http://www.myspace.com/video/m.....w/40709135

    • http://fendersonandhampton.com Cuso

      beat me to it. that’s all that came to mind when I saw this.

      • Easy-E

        +1 this

  • nesto

    Why not move him to RF? If he doesn’t want to pitch, let him unleash his cannon out there. Much more usable than at 1st, and I doubt someone as athletic and young as he is won’t be a train wreck out there.

    • A.D.

      My thoughts exactly, don’t waste that arm

  • joshfortunatus

    Does he throw lefty, too?

    • joshfortunatus

      Dumb question.

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Mike Axisa

      Nope, throws right.

  • A.D.

    Gallo is legitimate first round talent both on the mound and as a position player. He prefers to hit and went to great lengths to keep his pitching schedule a secret so scouts couldn’t see him this spring.

    Can always do a version of the Casey Kelly treatment, let him try and hit his way through the minors, if he flops quickly then put him on the mound (though I realize the Sox had Kelly split time)

  • Voice of Reason

    The prospect of taking Gallo as a hitter and then forcing him to pitch intrigues me, Hulet sort of mentioned it in a fangraphs piece today where he drafted him (not mocked him, exactly) to the Mets.

    If the kid is a true two way player, then it couldn’t hurt to at least test him out on both sides in professional baseball early on rather than wait for him to flame out on one side before exploring the other.

  • Brian S.

    If we get him we should Casey Kelly him.

    • oj

      Do you mean overhype him and move him

      • Robinson Tilapia

        I don’t know if the proper comeback would be “but we already did that this offseason,” or if it would be “nah, just overhype and keep him.”

        • Ted Nelson

          Montero’s hype came from his performance. Kelly’s largely from projection. Kelly’s actual stats were pretty mediocre.

          (I’m not saying that the Red Sox were able to artificially dupe the Padres, just that I see the two as different.)

  • Robinson Tilapia

    I think this is the first draft profile that’s had me actually excited about a player, however silly that may be.