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Draft profile: Jake Burger

MLB.com

With the 2017 Draft fast approaching (June 12-14 on MLB Network and MLB.com), we take a closer look at the top prospects in this year's class.

Name: Jake Burger
Position: 3B
School: Missouri State
Rank on Draft Top 20016
DOB: 4/10/1996
Bats: R Throws: R
Height: 6'2" Weight: 210 lbs.

With the 2017 Draft fast approaching (June 12-14 on MLB Network and MLB.com), we take a closer look at the top prospects in this year's class.

Name: Jake Burger
Position: 3B
School: Missouri State
Rank on Draft Top 20016
DOB: 4/10/1996
Bats: R Throws: R
Height: 6'2" Weight: 210 lbs.

:: 2017 MLB Draft coverage ::

Tools
(Future grades on 20-80 scouting scale)
Hit: 50
Power: 55
Run: 50
Arm: 55
Field: 50
Overall: 55

Top 20 Draft Prospects profiles

Stats
Games: 
59
Avg:  .333
AB: 231
2B: 12
HR: 22
RBI: 64
OBP: .451

Scouting report
Burger went undrafted out of high school but has blossomed into a college star, finishing second in NCAA Division I with 21 home runs in 2016 and winning Missouri Valley Conference player of the year honors this spring, when he led the league in all triple crown categories (.341-22-63) entering NCAA tournament play.

Though he went homerless with the U.S. college national team during the summer, scouts still recognize Burger as one of the top power sources available in a Draft class short on college hitters. He generates his pop more with strength than bat speed, and there are some worries about an arm bar in his right-handed swing. He controls the strike zone well and makes reliable contact for a slugger, so he should hit for some average as well.

While Burger isn't the most graceful player, one scout compared him to Hunter Pence for his ability to get the job done in less than pretty fashion. Despite his large frame, he has average speed out of the batter's box and decent range at third base. With his solid arm, reliable hands and admirable work ethic, he should be able to stay at the hot corner.

MLB comp: Pence or Kevin Youkilis

Fun fact: Burger comes from an athletic family. His father, Mike, played college baseball at the University of Evansville and his mother, Shannon, was a standout tennis player at Evansville as well.

He said it: "It was a change in approach. I wouldn't say it was a complete change of my swing. I always hit the ball hard; it was just at the head of the infielder instead of over the infielder's head. So I stayed back my freshman summer and lifted, which helped. The strength helped big time. Also, just working on not hitting under the ball, but getting more backspin and working on getting higher launch angles. If I make 10 outs, I'd rather seven of them be flyouts."
-- On the power surge following his freshman season at Missouri State, via SB Nation.

They said it: "I'm not real sure what needs to be better with Jake. That might be strange commentary from a coach, but he's just continuing to grow and has the work ethic part down pretty well. He'll continue to do whatever is needed for him to get better. There's just so much upside there."
-- Missouri State head coach Keith Guttin, via D1baseball.com

Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles