A Scout’s Take: Top 10 Elite Black Talents From The 2018 MLB Draft

Breaking down the Black Knights of the 2018 MLB Draft.

Brandon C. Lowe is a video coordinator/technician who also does scouting with the Houston Astros, is a baseball lifer, schooled on the game in Decatur, Georgia by his pops Dione Lowe, who was the ace pitcher and monster masher on the Lakewood, N.J., All-Stars squad that won the 1975 Little League World Series title.

Dione was one of three African-Americans on that Lakewood team, which also had a Black coach and a Puerto Rican player. The team reflected the diversity of the community, something that Brandon is now committed to in his daily life.

Brandon played three years of college ball at HBCU Morehouse, then interned in baseball operations with the Red Sox in 2013. The Sox were MLB champions that season. He didn’t get a World Series ring, but Lowe says he gained invaluable knowledge and, “I got a watch.”

He then interned in corporate sales with the MLB Office of the Commissioner in 2014, in baseball operations with the Braves in 2015, did a minor league video internship with the White Sox in Birmingham in 2016, and worked for Perfect Game in 2017.

Lowe is also currently working on a film project that he says he hopes will help market the game more to African-Americans to increase participation and interest among the community.

Lowe is constantly traveling and checking out players.  He discussed some of the top African-Americans drafted in the 2018 MLB Draft with The Shadow League.

Bleacher Report on Twitter

Jordyn Adams is giving up poster dunks and touchdowns for home runs after being drafted 17th overall in MLB Draft by Angels (@GHFalcons) https://t.co/cMDS8pYPtQ

Jordyn Adams “With the rise in football injuries and the NFL’s lack of compassion for its players, Im excited to see a top football recruit like Adams get selected in the first round of this year’s draft and develop his game in the Angels’ organization. Adams was the 17th pick of this year’s draft, which holds a slot value of about 3.5 million dollars. He was one of the most athletic picks this year who trended upwards on everybodys board after a phenomenal NHSI. He is a UNC commit, which is where his dad coaches the D line but has stated hes a true baseball player and played the sport longer than football. Adams has the potential to become a plus defender in CF with solid defensive tools and above average arm strength and has the intangibles and skills to become a true impact player. He has shown how he possesses solid bat speed and natural strength with great instincts in the outfield. The Angels will work on developing his swing and help him use more hips and lower half to get best results.”

Perfect Game USA on Twitter

Xavier Edwards was the 17u WWBA MVP helping @TheCanesBB to the title and has some of the best hands we have seen in the IF goes to San Diego with pick #38 https://t.co/Qh4lb1rH01 https://t.co/33xLCDmA6k

Xavier Edwards “He is a talented switch-hitting, middle infielder with some quick twitch, who is extremely competitive and confident and will continuously work hard to become the best ball player on the field. He played shortstop in high school, but projects to possibly move to 2B at the next level. He’s showcased excellent glovework in the infield and has solid range that makes a case to stay at short, but as of right now the arm strength profiles more for 2B. Edwards is a plus runner who will develop his base stealing skills and become a major factor in that category. He has a lot of time to put on muscle and add more strength to his swing, he has an excellent feel for the barrel and has a consistent line drive plane and will not hesitate to drop a bunt down. Look forward to seeing him bat leadoff in the San Diego Padres lineup in the future.”

Prep Baseball Report on Twitter

RHP Simeon Woods-Richardson (Kempner HS) goes 48th to the #Mets https://t.co/49L2Fpt11u https://t.co/wRoilTVXXc

Simeon Woods-Richardson — “Simeon is a physical right-handed pitcher with tons of upside and is still filling out his frame. He was impressive in most of his summer outings and electric at the Perfect Game World Championships in the fall. He was selected by the Mets in the second round. He throws a heavy fastball that has reached up to 95, but sits consistently in the low 90s and has some feel for a curveball with above average break and 11-5 shape with solid depth.  With his size and athleticism, he has the potential to be a solid middle of the rotation arm at the MLB level.”

Fish On The Farm on Twitter

Marlins take SS @johnson_osiris at 53 overall. The cousin of Jimmy Rollins, Johnson, 17 and a switch hitter, hit .535 with 6 HR in his senior year of high school in California. He worked out with the Fish yesterday.

Osiris Johnson — “Osiris is a talented and raw shortstop from Alameda, Ca and strong baseball bloodlines as he is the cousin of the former MVP and World Series champ, Jimmy Rollins. Osiris has flashed some bat speed and solid defensive tools at short with enough arm strength and quickness to stay at that position, but will have pro coaching guide him on improving his swing and bat to ball skills once he begins his pro career. Johnson was selected in the second round by the Miami Marlins.”

TBJ Baseball Academy on Twitter

Congratulations #T12 Alumnus, Tristan Pompey, has been drafted in the third round of the #MLBDraft by Miami.

Tristan Pompey

“Pompey is another player with strong baseball bloodlines as his brother Dalton is currently with the Toronto Blue Jays organization. He was selected in the third round by the Miami Marlins. Tristan played at a talented University of Kentucky baseball program as they had the most draft picks produced by any program in the country in 2018. He possesses a strong hit tool and has done damage against a tough SEC conference. With the lack of arm strength, Pompey will stick in left field and will give you consistent line drive hits from each side of the plate. ”

Baseball America on Twitter

Here’s some video of the @Padres fifth-rounder, @ECUBaseball OF Dwanya-Williams Sutton https://t.co/ux4VHTQmWv

Dwanya Williams Sutton

“Sutton was selected by the Reds in 2015 in the 26th round, but chose to go to East Carolina and play baseball and the decision paid off as he was selected higher in the fifth round by the Padres. He possesses raw power and stands at 62, 215 pounds with a very strong and solid frame, but will have to work on carrying his raw power into games. Sutton also has struggled with injuries but had a great spring batting .343/.493/.619, with 20 walks and 26 strikeouts. He also was more aggressive on the basepaths as he swiped 18 bases this spring and was only caught twice. I look forward to seeing this player become stronger and increase the quality of his swing path and driving homers out of the ballpark for the San Diego Padres on a consistent basis.”

JKuhn on Twitter

A guy who could be there after the first 2 rounds is Taj Bradley. South Carolina Commit has all the tools to become a SP in the Major Leagues https://t.co/RnPL0rgCbW

Taj Bradley —  “Taj Bradley is another right-handed pitcher with tons of upside as he just 17 years of age. Bradley comes from a talented Redan High school baseball program that has seen many high school athletes get selected from their program. The most notable Redan baseball alum is three-time all-star and four-time gold glove winner, Brandon Phillips. Bradley liked being a position player and swinging the bat but bought into focusing on the mound more once he saw an increase of scouts begin to show interest. He sits in the low 90s with his fastball, but many project him to throw even harder as his body begins to mature and he gains strength. He flashes some feel for a curveball, but it is still a pitch that needs development. Bradley is very raw on the mound and has a fresh arm as he played most of his baseball games in the outfield, so there is a lot of work that needs to be done, but he’s an interesting player to follow as he goes through the Tampa Bay Rays system. He was selected by them in the fifth round.”

Zesty Detroit Tigers on Twitter

2018 MLB draft: Detroit Westerns William English drafted by Angels https://t.co/cuv30FSOsj

William English — “William English is another tall, unpolished and young right-handed arm from Michigan. Right now, hes more of a thrower, but will develop into a quality starter and understand how to properly attack hitters as he faces tougher competition in the minors. Hes reached up to 95 with the fastball and flashed a solid changeup with good deception and fade as well as a solid 12-6 curve with good depth, but must work at repeating the quality of both offspeed pitches and consistently throwing them for strikes. English also is a plus runner with some power from the right side of the plate. He will have a long time in the Angels system to figure it out and work on becoming a solid arm. He has the potential to be a back of the end rotation starter. English was selected in the fifth round.”

PG Tournaments on Twitter

2017 18u PG Invite MVP Kendall Logan Simmons MVPitcher Marlin Willis

Kendall Logan Simmons  — “Kendall is a talented high school player with raw power and raw arm strength who had a tough summer and spring leading up to this years draft. When he hits the ball, it goes a long way, but he must improve his bat to ball skills and cut down on the swings and misses. Long-term, he projects as a third baseman, where he played during the summer and held the position down very well. He doesn’t possess the amount of twitch you’d like to see in a prospect, but he does have quick hands and raw strength that he can tap into to potentially give you 20 plus homers. The Phillies selected him in the 6th round of this years draft.”

MLB Draft Tracker on Twitter

7 (218): @Cubs select Liberty University (VA) CF D.J. Artis. https://t.co/I4CV1DqC5p #MLBDraft

DJ Artis  “Artis is an athletic outfielder from Liberty University who has a compact and quick swing with an excellent feel for the strike zone and can run. Artis will play centerfield at the next level as he possesses some above average speed, but fringy arm strength. He has a very passive approach at the plate as he led the country in walks with a total of 62. Some scouts worry that his approach may not work at the next level, but I believe with an advanced feel for the strike zone and a quick, short swing with a very efficient path to the baseball, he’ll be able to rise pretty quickly in the Cubs organization. Artis was selected in the 7th round of the draft.”

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