'Huge upside': Tigers take Georgia prep OF Parker Meadows in second round

Lynn Henning
The Detroit News
Parker Meadows

While they were delighted to take Casey Mize with Monday's first shot in the 2018 big-league draft, the Tigers understood there was something missing.

A bat. 

They got one with the second round's first pick, when they grabbed Parker Meadows, a 6-foot-4, 195-pound, left-handed hitter from Grayson (Georgia) High.

Meadows, who is committed to Clemson, was an easy choice for a Tigers team that hopes a player with speed and power can fortify a farm begging for bats. 

Meadows had been projected to go as high as mid-to-late in the first round but was untouched when the Tigers pounced,

"Just a quality guy, a plus athlete, with huge upside," said Scott Pleis, the Tigers director of amateur scouting. "We hope he stays in center field. There's just a lot of things to like about him: bloodlines, everything kind of added up."

Meadows is the younger brother of Pirates outfielder Austin Meadows, who was named May's National League Player of the Month. 

Baseball America's scouting report says "Meadows is a plus runner out of the box and better in center field, with plus raw power and a plus arm."

The summary says also that "as a long-armed, left-handed hitter with a hitch in his swing, his contact and hit tool have been questioned in the past, although he has hit against solid Georgia competition this spring."

A separate scouting report, from Perfect Game, Inc., says of Meadows:

"Tall, very athletic build, some present strength, but lots of physical projection. Very fast, 6.51 (seconds in 60-yard dash), with easy acceleration on the bases. High-level, center-field tools on defense, has big range with long strides and very good arm strength."

The Perfect Game appraisal says also that Meadows has "loose, quick hands, gap-to-gap approach at present and will willingly hit the other way with some impact. Has a late hand drop-load that will occasionally impact his timing.

"Will keep improving offensively with additional strength."