- Full name Vincent Van Blue
- Born 02/08/1983 in Houston, TX
- Profile Ht.: 6'2" / Wt.: 180 / Bats: L / Throws: R
- School Lamar
Drafted in the 10th round (297th overall) by the Detroit Tigers in 2001.
View Draft ReportBlue is the best of three legitimate prospects on a Lamar High team that includes righthanders Jeff Niemann and Shawn Ferguson. Blue is a pure center fielder who can run a 6.6-second 60-yard dash, and he'll add power to that speed once he bulks up from 6-foot-2 and 190 pounds. He lacks plate discipline and didn't have a strong senior year, so there's some doubt about his ability to hit. A Galveston (Texas) JC recruit, he's expected to turn pro.
Organization Prospect Rankings
One of the best defensive outfielders in the system, Blue was an all-state performer in Texas in 2001 along with Brent Clevlen, whom he played beside in the Lakeland outfield last year. Blue has progressed slowly with the bat and didn't make it to full-season ball until his fourth pro season, but he made significant progress in 2005. He'll never hit for much power and compares to current Tigers center fielder Nook Logan. Blue has top-of-the-line speed, getting down to first base in as quick as 3.8 seconds from the left side. Blue isn't afraid to go deep in counts and work a walk, but his slap-hitting approach doesn't scare pitchers either. He can be handled with hard stuff inside and lacks bat speed. While he can fly, he's an inefficient basestealer who must improve his reads and jumps after leading the minors last year with 29 caught stealings in 69 tries. He also needs to become a better bunter to take even more advantage of his speed. Blue stands out defensively with good range and a fearless approach, though his arm is below average. He's ready for his first taste of Double-A in 2006.
Minor League Top Prospects
When they were teammates at Lamar High in Houston, Blue was considered a better prospect than righthander Jeff Niemann, who could be the No. 1 pick in the 2004 draft. While Niemann has starred at Rice, Blue struggled for two seasons in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League before making progress this year. Blessed with athleticism, above-average speed and good defensive skills, Blue was the league's best center fielder. He has some pop in his lefty bat, but some managers said his swing was erratic and a bit long at times. "Boy, he has some serious talent," Howard said. "He's a big strong lefthanded hitter who runs well, and he played really well defensively. He's a very good defensive center fielder with a lot of raw talent."
Best Tools List
- Rated Fastest Baserunner in the Detroit Tigers in 2006
- Rated Best Defensive Outfielder in the Florida State League in 2005
- Rated Best Defensive Outfielder in the Detroit Tigers in 2005