Oscar Mercado, SS, Tampa, FL
High School Senior
Birthdate: 12/16/94 Age at Draft: 18.61
Oscar Mercado Prospect Video, Gaither High School (via Steve Fiorindo)
Mercado is listed at 6'1", 175, but actually looks thinner than that. He is a very lightly built, fluid player. He has everything you would expect in an elite defensive shortstop. He has the quick feet, fluid movements and the well above average arm of a starting big league shortstop. He needs to gain consistency but there no reason to think he can't stick at short and be a star defender.
At the plate, his lack of strength is noticeable when compared to guys like Jan Hernandez but he won't get the bat knocked out of his hands. His swing is efficient and he makes solid contact. He has quick hands and shouldn't have a hard time catching up to velocity. With added strength and reps he could grow into an average or better hitter. Power will never be a strong suit but he should be able to hit some extra base hits. He could be a .280/.330/.400 guy with above average defense. That is a very valuable player, maybe a 3+ win guy in his prime.
Mercado could add strength and improve his bat while maintaining his great defense. He is one of the safer bets to be a major leaguer of this years' draft just because of his defense. Projecting how much he will hit is hard but I see him as a middle of the road hitter as a shortstop and he could exceed that with work. I see him as a middle of the first round talent. If he doesn't sign, his commitment is to Florida State.