Earlier today, we covered the group of position player prospects that will be heading to represent the Milwaukee Brewers in this year’s Arizona Fall League. The organization initially announced that they were sending three of its best bats to the AFL this year: Corey Ray, Lucas Erceg, and Jake Gatewood. This afternoon, we learned that another player promising young offensive player will be heading west to represent the Brewers:
#Brewers No. 14 prospect Monte Harrison added to @MLBazFallLeague's Salt River roster. Having a breakout season: https://t.co/lMkJiCFqr8 pic.twitter.com/qHq8lo37ez— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) August 30, 2017
Harrison, who turned 22 earlier this month, was selected by Milwaukee in the same draft as Gatewood back in 2014 but one round later. He was praised as having some of the best raw tools in the draft at that time and bypassed a football scholarship to Nebraska in order to sign with the Brewers. He’s battled a series of unfortunate injuries thus far in his career and has struggled to get his tools to translate into games, but has finally been fully healthy this year and has enjoyed a breakout 2017.
Harrison began the season with A-level Wisconsin, his third go-around in the league. A .265/.359/.475 slash (136 wRC+) with 11 long balls and 11 steals in 261 plate appearances lead to an appearance in the Midwest League All-Star game, where he clubbed two dingers and won the game’s MVP award. He was promoted to high-A Carolina shortly thereafter and has continued to show tantalizing power/speed potential. In 229 plate appearances for the Mudcats, Harrison is batting .268/.332/.483 (128 wRC+) with 10 home runs and 16 steals. Only 7 players have recorded a 20 home run/20 stolen base season in the minor leagues this year; Monte Harrison is one of them.
Steve Givarz of Baseball Prospectus had this to say about Harrison at the beginning of August:
Don’t worry if you have forgotten about Harrison these past couple years, he has been injured a lot. Don’t fret though, Craig Goldstein, myself, and many others have left seats on the bandwagon for you. One of the best athletes in the system, Harrison’s tools could rival that of Lewis Brinson’s, the only difference being that Brinson is two years older and in the majors.
The Brewers still have to select four pitchers to send to the AFL, so that announcement should be coming sometime soon as well.
Statistics courtesy of Fangraphs