The Chicago Cubs are desperate for pitching but went in a different direction with their first-round pick. They shocked many with their selection of Mount Carmel High School shortstop Ed Howard at No. 16.
Tale of the Tape
|High School||Mount Carmel H.S. (Chicago, IL)|
|Baseball America Rank||No. 20|
Howard is six-foot-two, 185-pounds and has an excellent glove for a prep baseball player. He has smooth hands with an arm that can make all of the throws necessary from short, with accuracy. He could eventually fill in nicely beside or in place of Javier Baez.
Despite being just a prep athlete, he’s arguably the best defending shortstop in this year’s draft. Howard has a high baseball IQ and remains calm in the field. He is a better defender than a hitter but has immense potential at the plate. Right now his swing is a bit inconsistent but he makes hard contact and is a gap-to-gap hitter. Howard’s growth at the plate could bring about average or better power, especially with a projectable 6-2 frame.
Howard has come a long way since his time playing for Jackie Robinson West (Chicago) and could one day play the infield for his hometown Chicago Cubs.