- Full name Jarrett Paul Parker
- Born 01/01/1989 in Fort Belvoir, VA
- Profile Ht.: 6'4" / Wt.: 225 / Bats: L / Throws: L
- School Virginia
- Debut 06/13/2015
Drafted in the 2nd round (74th overall) by the San Francisco Giants in 2010 (signed for $700,000).
View Draft ReportParker was a key player in Virginia's College World Series run in 2009, and he looked like a likely first-rounder with his body and track record. He slowed down by the time the Cavaliers arrived in Omaha, though, and he hit just .188 in the Cape Cod League. He got off to a slow start in 2010, and his stock continued to fall. His average dipped below .300 for some time, though he turned it on as the draft approached, raising his line to .322/.414/.574 with seven home runs in mid-May. At 6-foot-4, 210 pounds, Parker would be the final product if someone were asked to draw up the body of a major league outfielder with his long, lean frame. He's a good defender in center field with plus speed and an average arm. At the plate, Parker's strength and leverage give him good raw power. Against Duke this season he crushed a hanging changeup that one-hopped an office building in right field at Durham Bulls Athletic Park, which is also home of the Triple-A franchise. Parker's long arms do make him prone to a long swing and high strikeout numbers, and most scouts think he won't hit for a very high average. He would benefit from shortening up his swing and utilizing his speed more. Many hoped for a better season out of him and see him as a risky pick, but there's a lot of upside as well. He could go in the sandwich round, though it's possible that he could slide into the second round.
Organization Prospect Rankings
Parker has advanced slowly with the Giants, taking two years at high Class A San Jose and two more at Double-A Richmond, but he recorded a 23-homer, 20-steal season at Triple-A Sacramento in 2015, then topped that with a six-homer big league debut that included a three-homer game against the Athletics on Sept. 26. In the past, Parker's power played as solid-average rather than plus, but in 2015 he started to show the ability to clear the fence to all fields with plus power. He led Pacific Coast League batters with 164 strikeouts in 2015, but Parker now does a better job covering the entire plate because he has learned to go with the pitch. He also did a better job of hitting lefthanders. Scouts still question whether he'll hit more than .240 in extended big league action, but his newfound power means he could be productive with a below-average hit tool. Defensively, he grades as fringe-average in center field thanks to poor routes and reads, and he is stretched in right field thanks to a fringe-average arm, but he played all three positions in the big leagues. He remains an above-average runner who is aggressive on the bases. Parker hit .400 with eight extra-base hits in 17 September games, giving him a chance to compete for a spot on the big league roster.
Aside from Francisco Peguero, Parker may have the best blend of speed and power in the system. He's still learning to transform his talents, though. Once regarded as a first-round talent, he fell to the Giants in the second round of the 2010 draft after he hit .188 in the Cape Cod League and struggled with inconsistency in his junior year at Virginia. His first full pro season was more of the same, as he led San Jose with 74 walks but also paced the club by a wide margin with 144 strikeouts in 486 at-bats. Parker, who stands straight up at the plate, has trouble maintaining a consistent strike zone and has yet to solve lefthanders. He isn't much of a battler with two strikes. But he's ready to turn on fastballs and is capable of carrying a club when he's not overthinking at the plate. Parker, moved from center field to right to accommodate Gary Brown at San Jose, doesn't always look assured when he settles under flyballs. His plus speed helps him recover from bad jumps and allows him to steal bases. Arm strength isn't an asset, though. Parker ended the year with a confidence boost after a solid showing in the California League playoffs, making him likely to graduate to Double-A in 2012.
Parker's lean, athletic frame is ideal for a major league outfield prospect and he has a nice blend of running ability, some power potential and plus defensive skills in center field. He put on 20 pounds before his sophomore year and his home runs jumped from zero to 16, turning him into one of the top draft-eligible college hitters in the country. He also led Virgnia to the College World Series in the process. But he hit .188 in the Cape Cod League, and an inconsistent junior season allowed him to fall to the Giants in the second round last June. He signed for an over-slot $700,000 bonus as the 74th overall pick. Parker projects to hit at or near the top of the order, but he must develop better on-base skills because some scouts don't believe he'll hit for average. He had contact issues in college with 177 strikeouts in 656 at-bats, and he'll need to shorten up his long-armed swing if he wants to cut down on strikeouts. His arm is fringe-average but playable in center field, where he otherwise projects to be a solid defender at a premium position. He should start out at Augusta in 2011.