Marlins' 1st-round pick Scott makes GCL debut
MIAMI -- Hours before the Marlins faced the Rays in an Interleague Series at Marlins Park on Tuesday, a big part of the organization's future was seeing his first professional game action.
Connor Scott, the 13th overall pick in the 2018 MLB Draft in June, made his pro debut as a designated hitter for the Marlins' Gulf Coast League club at the Roger Dean Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla.
"Connor Scott played in his first game and went 1-for-3," Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill announced. "We talked about building up the middle, and it is good to get Connor and a number of our Draft picks signed and starting their professional careers."
A graduate of Plant High School in Tampa, Fla., Scott reached an agreement with the Marlins on June 5, the day after he was Miami's top pick. The signing became official a few days later, and Scott has been working out in Jupiter for several weeks.
The Marlins have been easing the 18-year-old into action, partly because of the off time from his prep season. Scott also had been dealing with a mild hamstring strain, so the Marlins did not rush him.
In the upcoming games, Scott should be ready to play center field.
Several of the Marlins' top picks in the Draft were in the lineup on Tuesday in the 4-2 loss to the GCL Nationals.
Catcher Will Banfield, Miami's Competitive Balance Round B choice (69th overall), caught and went hitless in three at-bats. And outfielder Tristan Pompey, third-rounder from the University of Kentucky, played center field and went 0-for-2.
Banfield, from Brookwood (Ga.) High School, has already played in a few GCL games. Banfield is an advanced defensive catcher. Last week, in his first GCL game, he threw out three runners attempting to steal second base.
Like Scott, Pompey was seeing his first game action on Tuesday.
Second-round pick, shortstop Osiris Johnson, taken 53rd overall, is also in Jupiter and is expected to begin playing for the GCL Marlins in the near future.
A 17-year-old from Encinal (Calif.) High School, Johnson is the cousin of former All-Star shortstop Jimmy Rollins. He signed recently and is in the process of getting into game shape.
In the early stages of their development, all the Draft picks will spend at least some time getting in shape and seeing game action in the GCL. In the upcoming weeks, some will move up to another level. The players from college tend to progress more quickly than high school prospects.
Fourth-round pick, catcher Nick Fortes, from the University of Mississippi, and a fifth rounder, right-hander Chis Vallimont, have already seen action at Batavia.
From the GCL, college players could go to short-season Batavia in the New York-Penn League or to Class A Greensboro.
It is more likely for college picks to reach Greensboro this season, with prep players likely moving up to Batavia.
Martin Prado (left hamstring) and Garrett Cooper (right wrist contusion) are progressing in their respective rehab assignments. Both could be rejoining the Marlins before the All-Star break.