- Full name Evan Michael Longoria
- Born 10/07/1985 in Downey, CA
- Profile Ht.: 6'1" / Wt.: 213 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Long Beach State
- Debut 04/12/2008
Drafted in the 1st round (3rd overall) by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2006 (signed for $3,000,000).
View Draft ReportAfter emerging last summer with an MVP performance in the Cape Cod League, Longoria cemented his status as a premium draft prospect with a strong spring and enters the draft as the consensus choice as the best of a weak crop of hitters. While his name's similarity to that of "Desperate Housewives" star Eva Longoria attracted attention, Longoria is not related to her. He wasn't drafted out of high school or a year later at Rio Hondo (Calif.) Junior College, but his game and body have matured since then. Longoria has grown two inches and 25 pounds since junior college, adding strength to a smooth swing that generates solid-average power. He has excellent hands that translate well both at the plate and in the field. Longoria's bat speed gives him at least average power, and it allows him to let balls get deep and use the entire field. While he filled in at shortstop last spring for the injured Troy Tulowitzki, the eventual No. 7 overall pick of the Rockies, Longoria has played mostly third base in 2006 and is a solid defender there with plenty of arm strength. He also could play second base, where he'd be an above-average offensive player.
Organization Prospect Rankings
Longoria has blistered professional pitching since he unexpectedly fell to the Rays as the third overall pick in the 2006 draft and signed for $3 million. The 2005 Cape Cod League MVP and Troy Tulowitzki's successor as Long Beach State's shortstop, he moved to third base, hit .315 with 18 homers in 62 games and reached Double-A Montgomery in his 2006 pro debut. That was just a warmup for 2007, when he was named Southern League MVP. Longoria was leading the Double-A circuit in runs, homers and RBIs when he was promoted to Triple-A Durham in late July, and his 21 homers set a Montgomery franchise record. He did top the SL in slugging percentage (.528) and home run percentage (5.5). A Futures Game selection, he ranked as the No. 2 prospect in the league behind Justin Upton. Longoria continued to rake in the International League, hitting .375 with two homers in the playoffs. Longoria displays a great feel for hitting, with a disciplined approach and impressive raw power. Both his bat and his power rate as 70 tools on the 20-80 scouting scale. With quick hands and strong wrists, he has a loose and easy swing, producing great leverage and exceptional bat speed. He hits through the ball with his strong follow-through and finish. When Double-A pitchers began to pitch around Longoria last season, he showed improved patience. Even so, he's an aggressive hitter who will swing at any time in the count if he gets his pitch. With his solid pitch recognition, he rarely misses a mistake, and he's capable of hitting tape-measure shots to all fields. Defensively, Longoria is an above-average third baseman with soft hands and solid body control. His footwork is a plus, both with his lateral movement and with charging the ball on slow rollers. His arm strength is another plus, and his throws have good carry and accuracy. He has taken quickly to his new position, making just 19 errors in 177 games at third. He competes hard and has good makeup. There are times when Longoria's aggressiveness gets the best of him, particularly when it comes to chasing sliders down and away in the strike zone. He doesn't have a classic swing but there's no question that it gets the job done. His biggest shortcoming is his speed, which grades as slightly below average and led to just adequate range at shortstop, prompting his position switch. He does, however, run the bases well with his impressive instincts. The Rays should have a rookie-of-the-year candidate at third base for the second straight season. Longoria has little to prove in the minors and will push Akinori Otsuka to second base when he's ready. Longoria's spring-training performance will determine whether he makes the Opening Day roster, but there's not question he'll be playing for Tampa on a full-time basis at some point in 2008. He gives every indication of becoming an all-star, hitting .300 with 30-plus homers on an annual basis.
The Devil Rays planned on taking a pitcher with the third overall pick in the June draft, but changed their plans when Longoria unexpectedly fell to them. The 2005 Cape Cod League MVP signed for $3 million on draft day after batting .353/.468/.602 as a junior at Long Beach State. Known for his bat, he hit even more than expected in his pro debut, whacking 21 homers (counting the playoffs) and reaching Double-A Montgomery. Longoria had no problem adjusting to wood bats in pro ball. His quick hands generate plenty of bat speed, allowing him to hit for average and power. He projects as a .300 hitter with 30 or more homers annually. He played some shortstop in college and shows soft hands and a solid arm at third base. His competitiveness and makeup are considered major pluses. Longoria has no glaring shortcomings. He just needs to be more consistent in all phases of his game, something that should come easily with experience. His worst tool is his speed but even that is average. Easily the most advanced hitter in the 2006 draft, Longoria may reach Tampa Bay sooner than initially expected. He could push for a big league job in mid-2007 and has the talent to become an all-star at third base.
Minor League Top Prospects
Longoria's raw power and his extraordinary feel for hitting rank right with Upton's. The league MVP, he ranked among the league leaders in average (.307), homers (21), on-base percentage (.403) and slugging (.528) when he left for Triple-A in July. Longoria has a fluid game with an easy, loose swing that generates exceptional bat speed. His power comes from leverage created by his quick hands and strong wrists. He's aggressive in all counts and will chase breaking balls away, but he also displayed patience as he was often pitched around this season. "He's hitting balls that were traveling to parts of parks you just don't see guys hit them," an American League scout said. "The leverage and finish he generates in his swing is something you just can't teach." A solid-average defender with a slightly above-average arm, Longoria displays body control on slow rollers and he has soft hands. He's a below-average runner.
Top 100 Rankings
Best Tools List
- Rated Best Defensive 3B in the American League in 2010
- Rated Best Defensive 3B in the American League in 2009
- Rated Best Power Hitter in the Tampa Bay Rays in 2008
- Rated Best Hitter for Average in the Tampa Bay Rays in 2008
- Rated Best Power Prospect in the Southern League in 2007
- Rated Best Power Hitter in the Tampa Bay Rays in 2007