SoxProspects News

June 7, 2013 at 1:18 PM

Red Sox select Jon Denney with their third-round pick

With their third-round pick, the Red Sox have selected catcher Jon Denney out of Yukon HS (OK).

Denney is a high-upside pick who was expected to be a first-round pick by many of the experts, including Baseball America and Perfect Game, who had him ranked 25th and 23rd overall in the draft, respectively. He was a late rising prospect in the early spring, and some felt he could be the top high school catcher in the draft. However, his performance dipped later in the spring, causing some teams to cool on him as a prospect.

At this point, his offense is ahead of his defensive game, and there are still some questions whether he will ultimately stick at catcher. In the batter's box, he uses his strong core to his advantage with a compact swing. He has one of the highest offensive upsides of all catching prospects in the draft with plus power potential, though he needs to refine his approach and cut down on the swing-and-misses, according to Perfect Game.

Denney has a prototypical catcher frame at 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds. He also has solid all-around catching tools, but he seemed to take a step back behind the plate recently. The feeling is with more pro instruction, he will be able to use strong wrists and soft hands to his advantage, as he is not the most agile, according to Baseball Prospectus. He will need to improve his footwork and arm action when throwing out potential base stealers, but makes up for around average arm strength with great accuracy. If he is unable to stick behind the plate, Nick Faleris of Baseball Prospectus believes he will be able to play in a corner outfield spot because of his athleticism, or the bat may play at first.

Denney struggled this spring, so it looks like a case where the Red Sox decided to take a guy who fell slightly because of recent performance.

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Matt Huegel is Managing Editor for Follow him on Twitter @MattHuegelSP.

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