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Paul Pollard Scouting Report, West Los Angeles College — February, 2018

Full Name: Paul Pollard
Birthplace: Los Angeles, CA
School: Fairfax HS
Height, Weight: 5’10”, 150 lbs.
Position: OF
Bats/Throws: R/R
Dates Observed: 2018 — January 30
Affiliate(s): West Los Angeles College (CCCAA, Western State Conference)
Previous Coverage: None

Tool (PV/FV)
Notes & Comments
Hit (30/40)
Extremely aggressive at the plate; hacked first pitch in every single at-bat in my looks. Poor pitch recognition relates to that; looks dead red and wants to swing, but struggles to adjust to breaking balls because he sells out early for the fastball and can’t make the switch. Will get hurt when book gets out and he starts getting pitched backwards. Punchy, line drive swing with a relatively flat swing plane; needs to be able to put the ball in play consistently and get on base to use his speed, but lacks great contact skills besides that over-aggressive look at first pitch strikes. Steps considerably into the bucket; approach varies pitcher to pitcher and situation to situation with him looking very raw and extremely uncomfortable at times. That said, he clearly understands how to exploit his foot speed, and he knows he must put the ball in play and get on base if he’s to be effective.

Power (20/25)
Extremely little power at present and very unlikely to improve towards too much raw power in the future. Flat swing plane is conducive to hitting the ball in the air with some authority, but lacks bat speed and necessary hand/wrist strength to start manipulating the barrel to hit bombs. Any power he does get will come by virtue of a gap-to-gap approach at the plate, and his incredible natural foot speed that can quickly leg out extra-base hits.

Glove (40/50)
Elite speed gives him a legitimate shot to play center field in professional baseball. Quick first step, easy access to top speed, covers a ton of ground in the outfield. Struggles to track the ball off the bat at times in center, and he’ll make the wrong initial read on some balls hit in the air, but more than enough speed to overcome that. Plays shallow and loves to run down balls in the gap; some work to do here on the technical aspects of playing outfield and the broader issue about reading balls off the bat (more/better reps), but his speed and ability to go get the ball could be the foundation towards Pollard becoming an above-average defender.

Arm (30/35)
Well below-average arm strength; lacks velocity and carry on throws into the infield, particularly to home plate. Lacks good size or any real sort of leverage to improve arm strength; scrawny and small, lacking in velocity. Likely to spend most/all of his career in center/left without arm strength necessary to really play right field; would do well with arm and speed to continue to cheat on it a bit and play shallow.

Speed (75/80)
Clocked him twice at 3.97 second from the RHH box to first base; fastest home-to-first times I’ve ever recorded for an RHH on a swing; objectively elite speed by grade. Perennial green light to steal once on the base paths; nearly automatic to move from first to third in two pitches’ time once he reaches base. Ironically, incredible speed has probably hurt him — has never had to learn to read situations or pitchers’ pick-off moves, and a bit of a course correction on the base paths may be in order upon moving to a higher level.

Incredible athlete; undersized with some room left to grow into his body with good musculature and sneaky strength in another couple years. Risk taker on the base paths who would do very well to learn the nuances of the running game against better competition that he can’t just naturally outrun time in and time out. Extremely raw at the plate. He’s going to be a project professionally, and he may not be ready for another year or two, but if an organization is patient they could flip Paul Pollard into a legit outfield option in a few years.

MLB Draft
Very, very raw right now in virtually every aspect of his game. One truly projectable tool that stands out from the crowd, but everything else about his game has a long, long way to go to be ready for professional baseball. Tough to figure if he’s an MLB Draft candidate come 2018; he may be a good fit for an organization looking at him as a late-round pick who can develop in the complex league/short-season world for a season or two after being drafted. Patience is key here; Pollard’s athleticism is off the charts with speed that just doesn’t come around very often; that may be enough for a team to take a flyer in this year’s MLB Draft, but if not, he’ll get a chance after his four-year stop assuming his development path continues as it has at West Los Angeles College.

OFP (40 FV)
Speed to drool over, but everything else about his game is so limited that it’s tough to envision Paul Pollard as an everyday big league starter in a few years. If he can still steal bases while transitioning into pro baseball, his value increases dramatically as a bench outfielder/pinch runner on a 25-man roster. Will be a long, long road ahead for that, though; high risk prospect here with plenty of uncertainty. MLB ETA: 2023.

Paul Pollard Scouting Report, West Los Angeles College — Game Video

In addition to our Paul Pollard scouting report, we have game video below. You can get more West Los Angeles College prospect videos when you click here and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

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Bobby DeMuro

Bobby DeMuro is the founder of Baseball Census, the author of We Is Blaze, (obviously) a fan of minor league baseball, and an unlikely expert on the animated classic TV show King Of The Hill. For more on Bobby and the personal, human side of this site, follow him on Twitter and Facebook: @BobbyDeMuro.

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