The Pittsburgh Pirates selected Barrett Barnes with their second round compensation pick for Ryan Doumit. He is the typical Pirates outfielder pick. He has the speed the Bucs love and is a polished college hitter.
The power potential is there as well and some compare Barnes to a Nick Swisher type player down the road. He played for Texas Tech who really sucked at the game of baseball this season so not many people have been able to watch him play, including me.
Why do we think the Bucs grab Barnes so high? He might be able to stick as a center fielder and develop some power as he matures. The Pirates love the two centerfielder concept with such a large outfield in left and center at PNC Park. Barnes should sign below slot if all works out, and he should sign rather quickly and get to work on his career.
Why did Barnes fall so far? Some aren’t sold on the Red Raiders junior because he seems like a tweener. He has a toe tap that scares some scouts who worry about his timing moving forward. A mediocre arm, (one of those exists already in center,) could force him to a corner outfield position which would bump down his value.
Why do we like it? He’s young! Just 20 years old and about eleven months….We think he can develop some pop. He doesn’t try and do too much (2:25 mark in highlight video) if you watch some more of the Tech video posted below, hell he even knows how to lay down a proper bunt.
The price should be right. He looks like he plays with an I have something to prove attitude, which we love.
Some highlights from Barnes, posted a few days ago:
Working a walk from 2010:
I think you’re not hearing as much about him because Texas Tech isn’t having a great year, but what more do you want from Barnes? He’s hitting .342 with power — lots of doubles and triples, he’s got a respectable 6 homers, he’s 18-for-18 stealing bases, he has more walks than strikeouts. That’s a damn good year, and his tools are impressive. I know some scouts aren’t sold on him as a center fielder and see him as a bit of a tweener, but I believe in that power/speed package. I’m in on Barnes.
Minor League Ball:
Barnes is rapidly establishing himself as one of the top outfield prospects available in the 2012 draft. Currently hitting .333/.444/.608 with six homers, 20 walks, and 19 strikeouts in 102 at-bats, Barnes is willing to work counts and has excellent bat speed. He’s also stolen 13 bases in 13 attempts, although he got caught leaning the wrong way once in this game and was picked off by the pitcher. He has the range and arm strength for center, and overall I was very impressed. The tools are clearly here and the skills look solid, too. He doesn’t turn 21 until July. Given the relatively weak college hitting class this year, he has a definite shot at the first round.