PHOENIX -- D-backs fans will get a chance to watch the team's second-round pick, Louisville third baseman Drew Ellis, during the College World Series.Ellis, the No. 44 overall pick, is the most productive player in a loaded Louisville lineup, hitting .367/.457/.729 and showing power to go along with improved polish
PHOENIX -- D-backs fans will get a chance to watch the team's second-round pick, Louisville third baseman Drew Ellis, during the College World Series.
Ellis, the No. 44 overall pick, is the most productive player in a loaded Louisville lineup, hitting .367/.457/.729 and showing power to go along with improved polish and 20 home runs.
:: 2017 MLB Draft coverage ::
"We spent a lot of time. We had a tremendous amount of looks throughout the course of the year," D-backs scouting director Deric Ladnier said of scouting Ellis. "Then, he really continued to grow as a hitter. The power was very evident. His ability to use the whole field was evident. It's just a very easy, professional stroke."
Ellis has a quick, compact swing and uses the leverage he has in his 6-foot-3 frame. He has shown a good feel for the strike zone as well, walking 38 times and striking out the same number.
"He just has this tremendous knack to find the barrel to the ball," Ladnier said.
• D-backs' 7th overall pick: Pavin Smith
• D-backs' 68th overall: Daulton Varsho
Ellis played primarily at third for Louisville, but he also played first base when No. 4 overall pick Brendan McKay pitched.
The D-backs view his future at third base.
"He's very good; he's solid," Ladnier said. "He's not going to be that plus-plus defender that has 60 or 70 range [on a 20-80 scale], but he does have first-step quickness, he's got very sure hands, he's got a good arm."
Ellis played a big role in getting Louisville into the College World Series.
In Game 1 of the Super Regional against rival Kentucky, Ellis hit a home run that ended up being the difference in the game.
Ellis fit in with the other D-backs picks on the first day of the Draft, which included University of Virginia first baseman Pavin Smith (seventh overall) and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee catcher Daulton Varsho (68th).
"I think it's pretty obvious: The theme of the top of our Draft was to target some accomplished college bats," Ladnier said. "We're very excited about these players we were able to select."
The Draft continues on Tuesday with Rounds 3-10. The MLB.com preview show begins at 9:30 a.m. MST, with exclusive coverage beginning at 10 a.m. MST.
Steve Gilbert has covered the D-backs for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB.