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CHICAGO (CBS) The White Sox selected outfielder Keenyn Walker from Central Arizona College with the 47th overall pick of the MLB First Year Player Draft Monday night.
Walker is a switch hitting outfielder who has been drafted each of the last three years. He was originally drafted out of high school by the Cubs in 2009 with their 16th round pick. In 2010, the Philadelphia Phillies selected Walker in the 38th round.
“This is a highly athletic kid with plus-plus speed,” White Sox Director of Amateur Scouting Doug Laumann said in a statement. “He is a scout’s dream. Keenyn did everything I needed to see from a scouting and performance standpoint – speed, hitting and defense. He’s a top-of-the-order, leadoff-type guy with pop, and he’s a plus defensive center fielder.”
Walker batted .402 with four home runs, 50 RBI and 65 stolen bases in 63 games with Central Arizona this season. Walker posted a .502 on-base percentage and a .584 slugging percentage and was successful on 95.6 percent (65-68) of his stolen-base attempts.
Here is Baseball America’s scouting report on Walker:
Walker was drafted in the 16th round out of high school in Utah in 2009 and last year at Central Arizona, in the 38th round. Scouts have always been intrigued by the 6-foot-3 switch-hitter with standout tools and impressive athleticism. The raw tools don’t always translate on the baseball field, however, and he didn’t even start regularly last year. This year is a different story. Walker has performed well with wood and he should get more than the $250,000 he reportedly turned down out of high school. Walker has more power from the right side, but his lefthanded swing is more pure. He’s mostly a gap hitter with above-average speed, so he profiles as a good defensive center fielder. He has the speed to hit at the top of the order, but needs to cut down on his strikeouts. If he doesn’t sign, Walker will head to Utah.