• Full name Justin Irvin Upton
  • Born 08/25/1987 in Norfolk, VA
  • Profile Ht.: 6'1" / Wt.: 215 / Bats: R / Throws: R
  • School Great Bridge
  • Debut 08/02/2007
  • Drafted in the 1st round (1st overall) by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2005 (signed for $6,100,000).
    View Draft Report
    Upton stands as the favorite to become the draft's first overall pick, which would trump his brother B.J., whom the Devil Rays selected second in 2002. The sibling rivalry doesn't stop there. Justin has proven equally athletic and more advanced offensively than B.J. at the same age, demonstrating excellent patience at the plate and a quick stroke. Upton's well-defined and muscular upper body give a hint to his plus power potential, which he accompanies with equal amounts of speed. His 6.23-second time in the 60-yard dash at a Perfect Game showcase last year rates as the quickest in the scouting service's history. Upton moves well defensively and shows clean actions at shortstop, but again follows in his brother's footsteps because he has trouble harnessing the plus arm strength that has allowed him to hit 94 mph off the mound. The throwing errors come from not maintaining consistent mechanics, a problem that fades when Upton long tosses or makes throws from the outfield. This has led some scouts to profile him as a center fielder, though Upton would prefer to remain at shortstop. He actually played third base late in his senior season, making all the plays there after switching positions with a teammate who struggled to make the long throws from the hot corner. Wherever Upton lands defensively, teams will buy the bat. His character and work ethic often go under-reported, as people tend to focus on the five-tool skills. He's handled the expectations of being tagged 2005's top prospect since his freshman year of high school with aplomb, routinely playing in front of scores of scouts and answering countless questions from scouts and media alike. He continues to back up the hype, with his performance at the World Junior Championship in September as a prime example. He led Team USA in runs (eight), hits (10), triples (four), total bases (21) and slugging (.875).

Top Rankings

Organization Prospect Rankings

Minor League Top Prospects

Top 100 Rankings

Best Tools List

  • Rated Best Batting Prospect in the Southern League in 2007
  • Rated Most Exciting Player in the Southern League in 2007
  • Rated Best Strike-Zone Discipline in the Southern League in 2007
  • Rated Best Athlete in the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2007
  • Rated Best Hitter for Average in the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2007

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