- Full name Henry Jacob Gatewood
- Born 09/25/1995 in Visalia, CA
- Profile Ht.: 6'5" / Wt.: 190 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Clovis
Drafted in the CB-A round (41st overall) by the Milwaukee Brewers in 2014 (signed for $1,830,000).
View Draft ReportGatewood has baseball pedigree as his father Henry was drafted in the first round (January phase) of the 1982 draft and has won multiple home run derbies in big league stadiums last summer. At least 70-grade raw power is Gatewood's best tool and he hit home runs into the third deck of Citi Field and out of Wrigley Field. He has arguably the most raw power in the high school class. His ability to get to that power remains a question for scouts. He has quieted a hand hitch and made mechanical adjustments this spring. Gatewood showed the ability to hit the ball to the opposite field at the NHSI. He is likely going to be a below-average hitter for average but has special hands, looseness, bat speed and leverage in his stroke. A prep shortstop, Gatewood's 6-foot-4 frame will likely push him to a corner. He has smooth actions, first-step quickness and a plus arm that could make him a solid defender at shortstop. He has wiry strength and could get much stronger and bigger, potentially pushing him to right field. The Southern California commit can post average run times out of the box and is a long strider, though his speed will likely play below that level.
Organization Prospect Rankings
Track Record: Long considered a boom-or-bust prospect because of his immense power and swing-and-miss tendencies, Gatewood was in the midst of his best season at Double-A Biloxi before he suffered a torn ACL in his left knee in July 2018 while running to first base. It was particularly unfortunate because Gatewood had already set career highs with 19 home runs and .767 OPS in 94 games.
Scouting Report: With great leverage and extension out of his physical, 6-foot-6 frame, Gatewood has big power to all fields and can hit the ball a long way. He is aggressive and doesn't draw many walks, but sharper vision thanks to new contact lenses has helped improve his plate discipline and pitch recognition. Drafted as a shortstop, Gatewood initially moved to third base and now is considered an athletic first baseman who has learned his way around the bag.
The Future: Gatewood's knee injury came at an unfortunate time in his development. He won't be ready for spring training and will hope to get out to an affiliate by the summer.
Gatewood was drafted as a shortstop and later moved to third base, but he continued to grow, which ultimately landed him at first base in 2017. With power being his main offensive tool, Gatewood profiles well at first base and got better in the field with each passing day. The Brewers knew when they signed Gatewood that he would swing-and-miss frequently, and that continued to be the case in his early pro years. But he got contact lenses to improve his vision and made big strides in all areas of his game at high Class A Carolina in 2017, earning Carolina League all-star honors and a promotion to Double-A Biloxi. In taking his biggest leap, Gatewood realized that he has opposite-field power and doesn't need to pull everything. Helped by his improved eyesight, he began chasing less and made pitchers come to him more often, improving his plate discipline and on-base percentage. Gatewood has good bat speed and is making more contact without sacrificing power. With good hands, range and footwork going back to his days at shortstop, he is an athletic, sure-handed first baseman. Officially back on track and having reaffirmed his prospect status, Gatewood has a chance to move upward in a system with no real roadblocks at first base ahead of him.
The Brewers knew that because of his swing-and-miss tendencies, Gatewood would be a high-risk prospect when they drafted him in 2014. He wowed amateur scouts with his power displays, but has struggled to make contact as a pro, whiffing 345 times in 285 games for a 30 percent rate. The Brewers also figured the 6-foot-6 Gatewood would grow out of the shortstop position, and that happened quickly as he physically matured. At low Class A Wisconsin in 2016 he played third base and first base, and the latter might be his position for the future. Gatewood stumbled badly in the Midwest League in 2015 but rebounded to hit for above-average power with 14 home runs and 33 doubles in 2016. He showed a free-swinging plate approach, however, with few walks and many strikeouts contributing to a .240 average and below-average hit tool. Gatewood has tremendous bat speed and plus power potential. He has good athleticism for his size and a strong-enough arm to play third base but is going to need time to develop his skills at the hot corner. He must find a way to be more selective at the plate and shorter to the ball to keep his strikeouts within an acceptable range. He will head to high Class A Brevard County in 2017.
As they did with fellow 2014 prep pick Monte Harrison, the Brewers decided to push Gatewood to low Class A Wisconsin to begin 2015. Like Harrison, Gatewood struggled mightily, striking out more than one-third of the time and flashing little of the power that made him a must-watch during showcase events before he was drafted. It didn't help that he suffered a knee injury that knocked him out of action for a couple of weeks. Once he retreated to Rookie-level Helena in June, Gatewood looked more like himself, slugging .476 in 212 at-bats. The Brewers knew Gatewood was a high-risk/high-reward player when they drafted him, but now faces a possible move to third base, which happens to be a position of greater need in an organization stocked with young shortstops. The Brewers gave Gatewood a look at the hot corner during instructional league but stopped short of saying the move would be permanent. To take full advantage of his power upside, he will have to improve his all-or-nothing approach. In the field, he has good hands and a strong arm but already has grown a couple of inches since being drafted. Speed is not a big part of his game. The Brewers will remain patient with Gatewood as they wait for his power to develop, probably at Wisconsin in 2016, and they view third base as a viable fallback option.
Gatewood displayed the most raw power of any prep player in the 2014 draft, and the Brewers paid an over-slot bonus of $1.83 million to sign him. His father Henry, a catcher, was drafted in the first round of the January 1982 draft by the Dodgers, so he comes from a baseball pedigree. Gatewood won multiple home run derbies in big league stadiums in 2013. With that power comes exploitable flaws in his swing, however, and Gatewood has not proven he will hit for even a modest average. He had difficulty getting on base in his pro debut. He has good hands and impressive bat speed and leverage in his swing. A prep shortstop who stayed at that position in his first pro season, Gatewood's 6-foot-4 frame likely will push him over to third base at some point, if not to a corner-outfield spot. He has smooth actions in the field, good first-step quickness and a strong arm. His speed is average at best. Gatewood might have to repeat Rookie ball at Helena, and he has to become a better all-around hitter.
Gatewood has baseball pedigree as his father Henry was drafted in the first round (January phase) of the 1982 draft and has won multiple home run derbies in big league stadiums last summer. At least 70-grade raw power is Gatewood's best tool and he hit home runs into the third deck of Citi Field and out of Wrigley Field. He has arguably the most raw power in the high school class. His ability to get to that power remains a question for scouts. He has quieted a hand hitch and made mechanical adjustments this spring. Gatewood showed the ability to hit the ball to the opposite field at the NHSI. He is likely going to be a below-average hitter for average but has special hands, looseness, bat speed and leverage in his stroke. A prep shortstop, Gatewood's 6-foot-4 frame will likely push him to a corner. He has smooth actions, first-step quickness and a plus arm that could make him a solid defender at shortstop. He has wiry strength and could get much stronger and bigger, potentially pushing him to right field. The Southern California commit can post average run times out of the box and is a long strider, though his speed will likely play below that level.
Minor League Top Prospects
To illustrate Gatewood's massive power, consider this: In a Carolina League home run derby field with monster masher Eloy Jimenez, Gatewood emerged victorious. He used that well above-average raw power to mash his way out of high Class A in early August. He got his eyes checked out this offseason and got contact lenses as a result. With improved vision, Gatewood posted a .340 on-base percentage during his time with the Mudcats, a better figure than he'd produced at any of his previous stops. He moved to first base this year partially because of the presence of Lucas Erceg at third base and partially to increase his defensive versatility. He played sparsely at third base at Carolina and exclusively at the position once he was promoted to Biloxi. A shortstop in high school, Gatewood still showed the athleticism and the arm strength needed to play at the hot corner, and his bat has the potential to profile at both corners. One evaluator even thought he'd be playable in the outfield in a pinch.
Well known for his physicality and raw power that he showed off in high school, Gatewood had persistent trouble making contact, which pushed him down the draft in 2014. The Brewers selected him 41st overall and signed him for a tick more than $1.8 million. Gatewood struggled as a pro before reaching the Pioneer League in the second half of 2015. He hit .209 in the first half at low Class A Wisconsin, but a series of adjustments and the PL's offensive nature helped him taste success for the first time. Gatewood showed signs of figuring it out at Helena. He gained confidence in the box by becoming more consistent with his leg lift and hand load. He still has a long swing, however, and he expands the zone and struggles with good offspeed pitches, but he flashes the ability to hit for power in games. Gatewood also gained confidence at shortstop, becoming more aggressive on balls hit right to him and with throws to first base. With good actions and a strong arm, he can stay at shortstop for now, but some observers believe he'll eventually outgrow the position and wind up at third base or perhaps an outfield corner.