Lakeside (Wash.) HS
Height/Weight: 5’ 10”, 165 lbs
Birth Date: 08/21/2000
College Commitment: UCLA
Hit- 60(65) Power- 40(50) Run- 70 (70) Arm- 45(50) Field- 55(65) Overall- 55
Corbin Carroll is the prospect possibly most-linked to Arizona in mock drafts this season. Part of the solid prep hitter class, Carroll can play all three OF positions, but projects to stay in center, thanks in large part to his plus-speed (he runs a 6.33 sec. 60-yard dash) and high baseball IQ. He doesn’t hit for enough power for a typical corner outfielder and though he has a solid arm, it may lag a bit for right field unless he bulks up some. However, most scouts feel the power will come, stating that he already possesses sneaky power that surprises when he makes solid contact. Carroll has been repeatedly called the most-polished HS hitter in this year’s draft class. Working from a narrow, upright stance, he has a compact swing, takes a direct path to the ball, shows good plate discipline, and a feel for the barrel. His swing can be a little flat sometimes, resulting in more ground balls than one would like to see, however, the lefty hitter gets out of the box quickly and forces infielders to hurry lest he beat out an infield single. This ability, if combined with adding more loft to his swing, could make him a true power/speed threat.
Funnily, his closest comp is Alek Thomas, another prep outfielder who the Diamondbacks selected last season. While the tools are similar, Carroll’s rank as better pretty much across the board. Carroll would almost certainly be consensus top-10 pick if not for a pair of factors he has no control over. He is under-sized and he is considered “old” for being a prep player. Depending on the source, Carroll lists at either five foot nine or ten inches. TO go with that, he weighs in at 161-165 pounds. That’s not just a bit undersized, that’s borderline small. With such a small frame, there are some mild concerns about just how much more he can fill out before his tools start to suffer as a result. The second issue is that he will be turning 19 less than seven weeks after the draft. This puts his age versus development a year behind on the curve. Furthermore, it also indicates even less time remains for Carroll to fill out his form naturally. With the dedicated physical development which comes from playing professional baseball, Carroll is expected to put on some mass, but he may be quite close to a complete product already. The chances of finding another half-inch and 20 pounds will have all but evaporated entirely by the time he is selected.
Sadly, most of the comps I am hearing that are not extreme wishful thinking are all guys either still in the minors, or who flamed out. Undersized players like Carroll are only just recently getting longer looks if they don’t impress from the very start. Still, Carroll is going in the first round. The question is simply a matter of where. This draft, more than most, the middle of the first round is difficult to gauge. Some have Carroll going as high as 10. Others have him falling to Arizona at 26.
Outlook: Carroll projects to be a solid to above average outfielder with great on-base potential who could wreck havoc as a leadoff hitter with a bit of pop.
Modern Comp: Andrew Benintendi
Ceiling: Andrew Benintendi
Floor: Juan Pierre
The Takeaway: If the Diamondbacks really like him and believe they can develop him to his fullest despite the size issues, #16 is the spot to take him at. If the Diamondbacks are not 100% sold on his ability to fill out and reach his ceiling, #26 might be the appropriate place to try and take him. The chances of him falling that far are much slimmer, but there are plenty of scenarios out there where he does.