Shane Baz is one of the most talented high school prospects available in the forthcoming MLB Draft. A 6-foot-3, 190-pound right handed pitcher, Baz is a strong, athletic power pitcher whose fastball is already reaching 96 miles-per-hour.
In short, he’s the kind of player that baseball scouts dream about.
All of which makes Baz’s predicament all the more interesting. More than any other top prep prospect, Baz seems to have a true desire to attend TCU, where he’s committed. He’s a strong academic student and fully expected to spend three years in Dallas before heading to the big leagues.
He just may be too talented for that.
“I do think the interest and desire to go to TCU is legitimate,” Jim Callis, MLB draft and prospect expert for MLB.com and MLB Network, said. “Of any of the high school guys, he might have the strongest pull to college. I just think he’s too good to not go high enough that it will be compelling and push him to go. It’ll almost be an offer he can’t refuse.”
What could that offer be? According to Callis’ latest mock draft, released on Friday, June 9, Baz could go as high as No. 12 overall in the first round to the Pittsburgh Pirates. He could expect to receive a signing bonus of more than $3 million (the 2016 No. 12 pick, pitcher Jason Groome, signed with a bonus of $3.65 million from the Red Sox).
That, certainly would seem to be enough to sway Baz’s locus of decision-making. Then again, until he signs on the dotted line, it’ll be impossible to know for sure. Do you feel confident he won’t head to TCU given how happy he looks in the photo directly above?