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Austin Hedges

#17 | C
Cleveland Guardians Cleveland Guardians
Austin Hedges
Name: Austin Charles Hedges
Born: Aug 18, 1992 in San Juan Capistrano, CA
High School: JSerra HS, San Juan Capistrano, Calif.
Ht.: 6'1" / Wt.: 206 lbs
Bats: R / Throws: R
Drafted in the 2nd round (82nd overall) by the San Diego Padres in 2011 (signed for $3,000,000)
Scouts in Southern California rave that Hedges is the best defensive backstop to come out of the area in at least a decade. He has spent six years honing his defense with highly regarded JSerra coach Brett Kay, a former catcher at Cal State Fullerton and in the Mets system. Grades on his receiving range from 60 to 70 on the 20-80 scouting scale, while his arm rates as a 70 or even an 80, producing pop times as low as 1.78 seconds. Wiry, athletic and agile, Hedges is an exceptional blocker, adept at keeping balls in front of him. He's a below-average runner but not a baseclogger. Hedges is a high-energy player with an aggressive approach at the plate, and some scouts think he has a chance to be an average hitter with average power, though others think that is too ambitious. A righthanded hitter, most of his power is to the pull side, but he has worked hard on using the opposite field. He's a good competitor with an outstanding work ethic, and he projects as an everyday catcher with all-star potential, though he'll be tough to sign away from his commitment to UCLA.
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