Nick Pratto | 1B
The 18-year-old Pratto attends Huntington Beach High School in California, where he stars as both a hitter and pitcher. He’s committed to Southern California. Back in 2011, Pratto had the walk-off hit in the Little League World Series Championship Game, which is kinda cool.
Pratto is a legitimate pro prospect as both a first baseman and a left-handed pitcher, though he’s made tremendous strides with the bat this year and will be drafted as a position player. He’s a left-handed hitter who knows the strike zone and barrels the ball up consistently, and while he’s listed at only 6-foot-1 and 193 lbs., Pratto offers impressive power potential too. His athleticism and strong throwing arm — he’s mostly around 90mph off the mound — make him an asset defensively at first base. Pratto is not a bat-only first baseman. He runs well and has a great feel for the game.
Keith Law and MLB.com rank Pratto as the ninth and tenth best prospect, respectively, in the 2017 draft class in their latest rankings. Baseball America is a little more bearish and ranks him 17th, probably because the history of high school first basemen drafted in the first round is not pretty. The Yankees hold the 16th overall pick and they’ve always had an affinity for advanced prep bats, whether it’s Blake Rutherford or Greg Bird or Tyler Austin. That plus the whole SoCal thing leads me to believe Pratto is among their top targets.
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