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Xavier Edwards

I to see Xavier Edwards on June 22. If my schedule holds true and he's in the AZL the entire season I should see him another three times so this is a first observation opinion.

The Padres roster lists him at 5'10", 155. From a reasonable distance I would say the height is generous and the weight conservative; I wouldn't question 5'9" 165 or even 162.

He had five plate appearances in the game, three from the left and two from the right.

From the left side he's deep in the box but not all the way to the back. He stands close to the plate, his left toe touches the inside line of the box. He's square or maybe half a shoe open. Hands are in the premium hitting spot, above the point of the back shoulder and even with the flap of the helmet.

I didn't have a good angle to see him from the right side as the umpire was blocking me but he hit the first pitch both times so It probably wouldn't have made much difference anyway.

He pulled the ball all five times. As with all young players their swings vary from pitch to pitch, sometimes they're classic body swings with minimal hands, other times there's more hands but the fact he showed pull tendencies it's all good.

The kid can run. His Perfect Game profile says he's a 6.49 runner in the 60 which is a solid 7. It also says he's a "below 4" to first from the left side which is an 8. The scout sitting next to me had him a 4.07 from the right side which is a 7-8. There's a lot more which goes into the run grade other than straight line so I'd give him a 7 just off the eye and with no other data.

Four of the five balls he put in play never left the infield. His first hit (first three PA's were lefty) one-hopped the mound and fielded cleanly by the 2B behind the bag. Never had a play so he ate it.

Second PA was a hard hit clean ground ball single to right, contact was good and loud and the ball had enough on it to stay on the ground the whole way out, no funny spins or hops.

Third PA was a 4-6 fielder's choice, hard hit GB right to the 2B, routine play at first if no one on.

Fourth PA was an Arizona single to short, by the time the ball came down he was already past the bag, no throw.

Final PA was a push bunt fielded by the 2B.

He attempted three steals, successful twice. In the ninth after his bunt the pitcher threw over probably five or six times before he finally went. He was four, five feet from the bag, a good throw he was toast but showed how much he could impact on the bases.

He had six defensive chances in the game, three of them popouts.

His first play was a chopper past the mound, he read it and charged it well but the throw was a noodle despite recording the out. I know of two teams who would have selected him as an outfielder if the draft circumstances had broken differently. We're talking about a plus runner with compensatory range who if the arm develops after the swing change could have some value defensively like Billy Hamilton.

When Didi Gregorius first came up some people thought he would never hit but when I saw him he was pulling plus velo so I was never concerned about that. Never would have thought he's be a 25 HR guy but that's a different story. The fact a smallish guy like Edwards shows the ability to pull, especially from both sides is what I'm most impressed with.

Pretty good first view.

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