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Scouting Report: Top Junior College Position Player Prospects to watch heading into the 2024 season

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Nick Prasad
1 month ago
The 2024 college baseball season is underway from the NCAA to NJCAA and NAIA. Collegiate prospects are heating up as the watch for the next big pick in the MLB draft is on. With Division 1 NCAA being a spectacle, paying attention to junior college talent and what diamonds are popping out of the dirt is also important. 

SS Kendrey Maduro, Northwest Florida State College

Let’s start with a very tool-equipped player, Kendrey Maduro, a shortstop out of Northwest Florida State College. This right-handed hitting infielder is visually appealing with smooth fundamentals with the bat and with the glove. His 6’3”, 200lbs frame is constantly getting stronger, and his body is filling out towards success.
He was an original product of the TNXL Academy before starting his college career with Northwest Florida. So far, he’s made a name for himself, having a hot 2022-2023 season with a notable 44 RBIs, 14 home runs, 48 hits, and a .261 batting average. So far in the 2023-2024 season he’s recorded 62 at-bats in 18 games with four home runs and 12 RBIs. Maduro shows strong potential to be a draft player both this year and 2025 which he’ll be eligible again. He’s committed to the University of Central Florida for his junior year.  

3B Edwin Toribio, College of Central Florida

Edwin Toribio may be strongly considered for selection for this year’s draft if his season continues to be successful. Originally from the Dominican Republic, Toribio projects strongly in offensive performance and presently shows out with strong offensive production. 
Toribio is a swinger with power and generates power with his strong athletic build. He’s a monster in the box and is aggressive in every count. After 15 games in the 2023 MLB Draft League, Toribio’s name was on the fence, with only 14 hits and six RBIs with a .241 batting average. Fast forward to the college season, he posted a .403 batting average with a bombing 20 home runs and 75 RBIs, scoring 62 times in 254 plate appearances. Toribio is extremely projectable with minimal flaws that include high swing and miss tendencies, especially towards the breaking pitches. This guy will be one to watch in July 2024. 

SS/IF Jean Pierre Ortiz, Chipola College

Chipola College is a hub for Florida baseball prospects. Patrick Corbin and two former Toronto Blue Jays, Russell Martin and Jose Bautista are alumni of Chipola College. Following suit, most likely in the 2024 MLB Draft, will be Jean Pierre Ortiz, a two-way player and powerhouse from both ends of the field. 
True two-way players are rare at the college level, especially draft-eligible two-way players with potential both ways for professional baseball. The IMG Academy alumni was drafted in the 20th round of the 2022 MLB Draft by the Washington Nationals. In 2023, the Cincinnati Reds selected him in the 17th round but chose to honour his commitment to school. 
From the batter’s box, he’s recorded a .285 batting average with nine home runs, 24 RBIs, and scored 32 times in 48 games. He brings a compact swing with proven strength and ability to hit across the field, however contact and consistent barrel to ball will need to improve. On defence, Ortiz looks polished on forehand and backhand approaches, especially covering ground in the hole. He has a smooth arm that’s a plus. That strong arm translates on the mound to a low 90s fastball with the ability to command and spot up. Ortiz threw a lot of strikes and was given 14 innings so far, but he’s looking to bounce back from a downfall. He’s recorded 10 strikeouts, 13 walks, and an 8.36 ERA. Ortiz seems more suitable in the lineup. However, the option of the arm can be developed if need be. 
The Blue Jays will have a ton of options for this year’s draft, and some names will be familiar in the undrafted free agency market. Don’t be surprised to recognize a name or two on the draft boards across the league.

ARTICLE PRESENTED BY BETANO

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