Round Five: Center Fielder Matt Vierling
The Phillies stuck with the college ranks in the fifth round, taking center fielder Matt Vierling from Notre Dame. He was drafted back in the 30th round of the 2015 draft by the Cardinals.
Vierling set a career high with 10 home runs in 54 games, tying for the team lead. He had a .310/.402/.505 line with more walks (30) than strikeouts (28). He scored 38 runs and drove in 43. He also pitched in six games but allowed 11 runs.
Vierling struggled in the Cape Cod League last summer with a wood bat, hitting just .182 with 30 strikeouts in 112 plate appearances. The team has to hope that he will fare much better with the wood bat as a professional.
This pick was a rather under-the-radar one as Vierling did not appear on any top draft prospect lists. He has above-average speed and should stick in center as his fastball got up to 93 when he was on the mound. His swing is simple and produced enough at the college level to warrant being selected by the Phillies.