Baseball organizations take a different strategy into the draft than other sports. When NFL teams plan out their draft picks, they look at their needs. If the quarterback got hurt or was lost in free agency, they would likely draft a quarterback to play in the upcoming season. When a baseball organization plans out its draft picks, they don’t consider the needs of the major league team as much. Instead, they look to bolster the entire minor league system with talent that can either reach the big league roster one day or get traded for a major leaguer who fits their needs. At draft time it’s hard to tell which side a particular player will fall on, but sometimes gambling is worthwhile.
Chase Strumpf 2019 MLB Draft Profile
Chase Strumpf is a solid defensive second baseman and an above average hitter. While batting third for the No. 1 UCLA Bruins, Strumpf has posted a .281 batting average so far this season. Expected to go early in the draft, he has a lot of upside but is not as sought-after as other infield prospects because of his lack of consistent contact this year. He is impressive on both offense and defense, but he isn’t projected to be a flashy star as much as a utility guy. Regardless, he is an impressive athlete, a proven hitter, and a capable defender who has a chance to make it all the way.
Strengths of Chase Strumpf
Strumpf’s biggest strength is his bat. Best exampled by his 2018 season when he finished with a .363 batting average and an OPS of 1.108, Strumpf can get on base and hit for power. In the early goings of this season though, Strumpf struggled. He was striking out a lot, and his batting average stooped as low as .250. Still rarely going hitless, he was able to bring it back up to a respectable .313 by May 12 — a testament to both persistence and pure hitting capability. Since then, he has found his average resting in the .290s and low .300s.
His last season was so productive, though, that his average over the last two years is still .329.
Strumpf has found success hitting in the middle of the order on the No. 1 ranked team, showing the clutch-hitting capability that is so sought-after in MLB hitters.
Weaknesses of Chase Strumpf
While hitting is his strong suit, he has room to improve. He strikes out often, something scouts often look for. His timely pop may overshadow his frequent multi-strikeout games for UCLA fans, but when being looked at as a potential big league player, this is a glaring weakness.
Defense is another weakness of Strumpf’s. Although he is a good second baseman, as a power threat it’s his inability to play other positions that is a weakness.
An MLB comparison that comes to mind is Max Muncy of the Los Angeles Dodgers. If Strumpf can keep his productivity as high in the minor leagues as he has in college, he could match Muncy’s recently found success in the majors, too.
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