Zach McKinstry
(Christian Petersen / Getty Images)

Noteworthy Prospect Scouting Report: Zach McKinstry

When Kiké Hernandez left the Los Angeles Dodgers a hole appeared on the field. And not for a position either. This hole is the utility role for the team, the man who could play practically any position on the field with the exception of pitcher or catcher. One of the clear choices to fill it currently is fellow utility man Chris Taylor, who shines on a regular basis for the team. There is also left-handed batter Zach McKinstry who made his major league debut last year, yet only played seven games.

Statistics

What’s crazy to think is that McKinstry was drafted in the 33rd round of the 2016 Major League Baseball Draft out of Central Michigan. This meant that with not one significant attribute or position, he had to make himself a jack of all trades on the field. Every year throughout minor league play, the lefty seems to progress more and more. In 2019, McKinstry batted .300 with 19 home runs and 78 runs batted in between double and triple-A. Now, many expect him to be on the Dodger’s Major League Roster for 2021.

Report

Scouts started noticing him initially as a slap hitter. With his last season in the minors hitting 19 home runs, one can project him to hit 15 home runs a year with his newfound pop. This came from him adding strength, changing his grip, and swing path. He is as consistent as a contact hitter can be, with the keen ability to recognize pitches at the plate.

Overall

What McKinstry brings to the field is that versatility and is a plus defender at many positions. His bat also speaks for itself. As sabermetrics rule the game more and more, this attribute is in need more so. Chris Taylor may have tough competition if McKinstry performs as advertised this Spring Training. He is still not in MLB’s 100 prospect rankings, but this will probably change soon.

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