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From the Crow's Nest: Chaminade OF Blake Rutherford

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This week, we look at a prep outfielder with a lot of tools

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Prospect rankings can go a little haywire over the course of a season. Players who looked like a surefire top-ten pick in March can tumble down to the edge of nonexistence on top prospect boards by May. Rising up those boards isn't easy, but falling down them can be a quick, sudden process. Baseball is a strange game, and it takes serious, undeniable talent to remain in that top-ten range over the course of a year.

This brings us to Blake Rutherford, a prep prospect out of California who has consistently sat within that range for a couple years now. A bit of an older prep guy at 19 years old, Rutherford has been on teams' radars for awhile now and while he hasn't torn up prep competition quite as much as most talent evaluators would like, his tools are undeniable.

At A Glance

Name

Blake Rutherford

Position

OF

Bats/Throws

L/R

School

Chaminade College Prep (CA)

Ht ; Wt

6’3" ; 195 pounds

Born

5/2/1997

MLB.com prospect rank

7th

BA prospect rank

10th


The Rundown

Rutherford is as well-rounded of a prep prospect as you'll find in this draft. While he doesn't have the elite power of a Will Benson or the defense of a Mickey Moniak, he projects well in every facet of the game.

At the plate, Rutherford has a smooth, balanced swing that allows him to lash line drives to all parts of the field. His contact and power tool both project to be above-average moving forward as he fills out his athletic frame.

Rutherford's plus-speed and athleticism serve him well in the outfield. He projects best for right field, where he'll be able to bulk up some without losing his value in the field. Rutherford moves well in the field and figures to be a slightly above-average fielder at the very worst. The arm strength isn't great, but that should improve with time (and weightlifting and protein shakes and all that wonderful stuff).

Rutherford has the potential to be a five-tool star in the league one day. Offensively, he reminds me a lot of Jacoby Ellsbury with a little more pop. If he manages to fall to the Mariners, it'd be easy to dream of a future where Rutherford and Tyler O'Neill stand on opposite ends of the outfield and side-to-side in the batting order, crushing baseballs to there and back again.

Previous From the Crow's Nest prospects:

Zack Collins - C - Miami

Jordan Sheffield - RHP - Vanderbilt

Will Benson - OF/1B - Westminster Schools

Buddy Reed - OF - Florida

Bryan Reynolds - OF - Vanderbilt

Connor Jones - RHP - Virginia