The 2019 MLB Draft board is loaded with high school prospects, especially from ranks 17 through 40. One such prospect is an 18-year-old Californian, Keoni Cavaco. Cavaco is listed mainly as a third baseman but also played second, first, the outfield, and pitched for Eastlake High School in Chula Vista. Although he has committed to play for the local San Diego State Aztecs, he is predicted to go in the late-first or early-second round.
Keoni Cavaco 2019 MLB Draft Profile
Keoni Cavaco, who turned 18 the day before the draft, is long and lean, standing at 6’0” and weighing 185 pounds. He bats and throws right-handed. His arm and speed are his two biggest assets, both carrying a rank of 60. Having a rifle for an arm is a tremendous asset at any position, but it is especially important at third.
Then there is the adage that says, “You can’t coach speed.” It does not matter where a player plays — speed is important. However, at third base, it can be even more important, especially since the third baseman is supposed to take any ball he can get to. According to MLB.com, he has run from home to first in less than four seconds. Speed like this makes him appealing to many teams, since it is a skill that will help him both in the field and on the base paths.
His power rating is 55, meaning that he can mash the ball. However, that power doesn’t do much without any contact. That is the area where Cavaco needs the most improvement, since his rating is 45. Being a feast-or-famine slugger who strikes out a lot isn’t the end of the world, but if the rate is too high, he won’t reach his full potential. If he gets the proper coaching as he works his way through the minors, his contact rate will rise. That skill is easier to address than a lack of power.
Last Word on Keoni Cavaco
The San Diego area has sent several all-star-caliber players to the majors, most notably Alan Trammell and Ted Williams. While Cavaco doesn’t rank as a can’t-miss, he certainly has the potential to have a nice career. His strengths are in areas that are harder to coach than the areas where he needs work. That, combined with his young age, make him appealing enough to go in the first two rounds. While he may not be the next Adrian Beltre, he has the potential to be a solid addition to any team’s roster.
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