After the Rays made four selections Monday, they’ll continue the draft Tuesday with eight more picks. Check back throughout the day for updates.
3-99. OF Shane Sasaki, Iolani High School
Sasaki is the top prospect from Hawaii this year, and he’s committed to Cal Poly. The analysts on the stream indicated he doesn’t have any standout tool, but he’s solid across the board. Baseball America subscribers can see that its analysts agree with that assessment of its No. 191 player in the draft:
Sasaki is a 6-foot, 160-pound center fielder with a solid all-around package and good instincts on the field.
Oh man, tough loss for Cal Poly, but I really liked Shane Sasaski at Area Codes. Needed to add strength, but felt like he could hit. Runs well. Wish I had gone to see him this spring in Hawaii. #Rays #mlbdraft— Nathan Rode (@NathanRode) June 4, 2019
4-128. LHP Graeme Stinson, Duke
Stinson was one of the top prospects available on Day 2. Entering the spring, he was viewed as one of the top prospects available, but he was limited to 19 2⁄3 innings due to an injury.
On its No. 84 prospects, BA said:
His standing was in large part due to a plus fastball in the mid- to upper 90s as well a wipeout, 81-85 mph slider that was a plus-plus offering at its best. Stinson showed this premium pure stuff with USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team last summer, but scouts were looking forward to seeing what he could do in a starting role over a full season this spring.
It will be interesting to see how he’s deployed, and if he pitches this summer. He mainly pitched in relief at Duke until this season.
This is perhaps the biggest high-risk, high-reward pick of the draft with the #Rays taking Graeme Stinson. He entered the year as the top pitcher on the board and has a 70-slider at his best, but was down into the 80s this spring and rarely pitched. #MLBDraft #Rays— Carlos Collazo (@CarlosACollazo) June 4, 2019
5-158. LHP Ben Brecht, UC Santa Barbara
MLB.com’s Jonathan mayo described Brecht as a pitchability lefty. At 6’7, he doesn’t have the stuff one might expect. He also has better control for a pitcher of that height. His career BB/9 is 2.04.
BA ranked him as the No. 87 player in the draft:
Brecht intrigues as a 6-foot-7 lefthander with premium strike-throwing ability. His fastball sometimes sits at 90 mph and touches 93-94 mph, but at other times he sits 87-88 mph and tops out at 90 mph. Regardless of his velocity, Brecht’s heater gets on hitters quickly because his long limbs give him deception and angle that make it difficult to pick the ball up out of his hand.
6-188. RHP Colby White, Mississippi State
White is little, but he has good velocity, and he reportedly throws his fastball a lot. In 24 2⁄3 innings this season, he had 45 strikeouts and seven walks. On the stream, Jim Callis notes he uses his changeup more than his slider.
BA ranked him No. 426 in the class.
7-218. 1B Jake Guenther, TCU
It’s been a while since the Rays took a college bat. He’s listed at first base, but he can also play outfield. He apparently has a nice plate approach. In his only season with the Horned Frogs, he has 41 walks and just 29 strikeouts. He batted .345 with a 1.038 OPS.
He’s the Rays’ first pick who was not ranked in BA’s top 500.
Rays take TCU 1B Jake Guenther here in the 7th. JUCO transfer from @SacCityBaseball, really good numbers this year, could maybe play an OF corner, good physicality, raw pop from the left side stands out.— Brian Sakowski (@B_Sakowski_PG) June 4, 2019
8-248. RHP Nathan Wiles, Oklahoma
Back to the college-pitching ranks for the Rays. He’s another pitcher that throws a ton of strikes — his career BB/9 is 1.99. BA ranked him No. 474 in the class:
He doesn’t have much standout stuff to speak of, but has a four-pitch mix with a fringe-average fastball in the low-90s and similarly fringe secondary offerings—but he can locate his entire arsenal for strikes consistently.
9-278. RHP Evan McKendry, Miami
According to BA — which ranked McKendry as the No. 122 player in the class — hip surgery led to a decrease in fastball velocity this spring. His ERA increased by more than a run, and his home run rate increased as well. Before getting hurt, he pitched well as a sophomore, so maybe he can get back to full health. From BA:
McKendry complements his fastball with a swing-and-miss changeup that’s among the best in the country. In contrast, scouts wonder about the quality of his ability to generate spin, as his slider grades out as a below-average pitch.
If the #Rays can get Evan McKendry healthy then this would be great value for Tampa. Fringe fastball with a 70-grade CH. Longer medical. Like the risk.— Vinnie Cervino (@vcervinoPG) June 4, 2019
10-308. C Jonathan Embry, Liberty
The Rays dedicated this pick to Don Zimmer.
Embry led Liberty with 11 home runs. He batted .310 with a .455 OBP.
On the stream, Jonathan Mayo called him a late bloomer with good defensive ability.