There was a lot of great baseball last weekend in the state of Washington, and I was at Kent Memorial Park to see three great games. Reese McGuire and Kentwood played in the first game, won, and then went on to play in the third game that afternoon. Kentwood went on to win that game moving onto the Washington 4A state playoffs in Pasco. Kentwood is one of four teams still left in the state tourney. During both games, I got my first look at junior catcher Reese McGuire. McGuire is possibly the best prospect in all of Washington, and he is only a junior. Following the page break I will take a look at McGuire’s performance, give you a scouting report on the backstop, and there is video of him at the end of the article.
In game one, McGuire did not have the best day at the plate, going 0-4 with a K. The called third strike on McGuire looked well off the plate, and the pitch can be seen in the video below. There were some positives though as the three balls he put in play, were well struck.
Game two was a much better showing for McGuire as he went 2-3 with an RBI. I was hoping to see him try and steal a base but he did not get the chance. After the first time he got on base though, he took a pretty big secondary lead and was picked off going back to first base by the catcher. McGuire was really aggressive on the base paths but I liked the aggression, especially coming from a catcher.
McGuire looked good at the plate and you have to love that he’s a left handed hitting catcher. He showed great bat speed, a nice loose smooth swing, a good eye, and made solid contact in each game. McGuire has a great hit tool with raw power and I think we could really see the power develop moving forward.
McGuire has a lot going for him with the bat as a catching prospect but what really separates him is his defense. I was very impressed with his work behind the plate and he is only a junior. He could very possibly be the top fielding catcher in the 2013 draft. He was excellent behind the plate blocking balls. I am confident in saying that not a single ball got passed him in either game. He also has very soft hands and does a great job picking the ball. The footwork behind the plate is also outstanding as he really bounces around back there thanks to his athleticism.
I did not get to see much of the arm but from what I have read, he has great footwork, and a powerful arm. McGuire’s pop time has been about 1.8 to 1.85 this year. The reason I did not get to see McGuire really throw because he has been dealing with shoulder soreness throughout most of the year. I really hope it is nothing serious but it is defiantly something of concern and hopefully we find out more after the high school season finishes up.
Overall, McGuire has the makings to be one of the best catchers available in the 2013 draft. McGuire is already viewed as the top prospect for the 2013 class and there seems to be a consensus that he is a better catching prospect than Clint Coulter, one of the top Washington prospects available in the 2012 draft. He is an outstanding athlete and he shows it behind the plate and on the base paths. The hit tool is impressive with raw power to go with. The best part of McGuire’s game, though, is his outstanding defense behind the plate. He has a bright future ahead of him, and while it is still very early to be looking at the 2013 draft, McGuire has all the tools to be one of the best catchers available.