Phillies Potential #1 Draft Pick: Buddy Reed

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The Philadelphia Phillies are evaluating outfielder Buddy Reed as a possibility for the top pick in the 2016 MLB Amateur Draft.

Of the four players I have profiled so far as possibilities that the Phillies might take with the #1 overall pick in the 2016 MLB Draft this coming June, three have been pitchers.

I truly believe that the Phillies are going to select a pitcher, particularly given new GM’s Matt Klentak’s strong words about the importance of good pitching, and the surplus of quality arms that this draft features.

But as I’ve also said before, a lot can change between now and next June. A can’t-miss bat may emerge as the must-have pick over the next few months. Today’s piece features a player who might very well see his name rise to the top of that draft board, University of Florida outfielder Michael “Buddy” Reed.

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Reed is 20 years old, and will be completing his junior year at Florida prior to the draft. He is a switch-hitter with terrific contact ability, batting .305 for the Gators during the 2015 regular season. He also showed some pop with 4 homers, 18 doubles, and 5 triples.

On the grass, Reed is a speedy outfielder who has shown excellent range and a strong arm in center field. Good defense is always a plus, as shown by the 2015 World Series Champion Kansas City Royals, who played stellar collective and individual defense throughout the season and the playoffs on their way to the title.

Reed also had a terrific showing during the SEC Tournament, batting .409 in five games, with a double, two walks, nine hits, and four runs scored.

While pitching is important, the Phillies are also going to have to develop and/or sign some impact bats to get themselves back into contention. The emergence of Odubel Herrera in 2015 helped bolster the outfield offense. Late season contributions from Aaron Altherr gave the team hope that he too can be a long-term piece.

A speedy contact bat like Reed at the top of the lineup could wreak havoc on opposing pitchers. Scouts project that he is a potential 20 steal threat at the big league level.

In addition to Reed, the Phillies have two other promising outfield prospects that can help bolster the lineup in Nick Williams, who was acquired from Texas in the Cole Hamels trade, and speedster Roman Quinn, who has battled a few injuries, but also has the potential to be a spark plug at the top of a contending lineup.

Add top prospect J.P. Crawford into the mix at shortstop, Maikel Franco at third, and a rotation featuring young guys like Aaron Nola and Jerad Eickhoff and you can see much to be hopeful for over the next couple of years, as Ryan Gerstel wrote today here at TBOH regarding the minor league system.

As 2015 comes to an end we fully close the book on a disappointing Phillies 2015 season and look ahead to 2016 and beyond. The Fightins rebuild is taking shape. They might not be playing meaningful baseball next October, but it sure will be fun to see these exciting kids continue to develop.

And then in June, we will be on the edge of our seats, waiting to hear which name Rob Manfred will announce as the Phillies #1 overall pick in the MLB Amateur Draft. Whether that be one of those that I have already profiled: Reed, Jason Groome, A.J. Puk, Blake Rutherford, Riley Pint, or a player to be profiled as our series moves forward in 2016, things should be sunny again in Philadelphia baseball sooner rather than later.

Next: Next Gen: Doc's Teen Son a Pitcher Too

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