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Ed Howard

SS | CubsCHC
South Bend Cubs South Bend Cubs
Ed Howard
Name: Edward Vernell Howard IV
Born: Jan 29, 2002 in Evergreen Park, IL
High School: Mount Carmel HS, Chicago
Ht.: 6'2" / Wt.: 185 lbs
Bats: R / Throws: R
Drafted in the 1st round (16th overall) by the Chicago Cubs in 2020 (signed for $3,745,500)
Howard is the top prep shortstop in a light high school class at the position. Midwest area scouts should have good history with him considering he played alongside D-backs 2018 second-round pick Alek Thomas as an underclassman at Mount Carmel (Ill.) High. Howard wowed scouts as a junior in Perfect Game’s Jupiter WWBA tournament, showing high-level ability on both sides of the ball. While he has upside as a hitter, the most polished part of Howard’s game is his defense. He’s a no-doubt shortstop as a solid athlete with reliable hands and a strong, accurate throwing arm. He moves fluidly in the middle of the diamond and has the ability to throw from all angles with excellent body control and a solid internal clock. He’s the clear-cut top prep defender at the position and has the potential to be a plus defensive shortstop in the big leagues. The one critique in Howard's defensive game is scouts would like to see better foot speed. He’s a solid runner, but not a burner by any means. Teams have to project more on Howard’s offensive game, particularly after he didn't play any games this season due to the coronavirus pandemic. He shows good bat speed, some bat-to-ball skills and a lithe, 6-foot-2, 185-pound frame that has plenty of room to add muscle. Howard is more of a gap-to-gap, line-drive type hitter at present, and scouts want to see him refine his approach. Howard did a nice job progressing through last summer and showed he can make adjustments. Howard is committed to Oklahoma, but it’s rare for the top high school shortstop to not go in the first round. A team that buys his upside could take him in the middle or back half of the first round.
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