With the second pick in the draft, the Reds have selected pitcher/shortstop Hunter Greene from Notre Dame High School in Sherman Oaks, California. MLB.com, Baseball America, and ESPN all had him being picked 2nd overall.
While Greene didn’t end up going first overall, he’s been the most talked-about player in this year’s draft class. Obviously, the biggest storyline surrounding Greene is that he’s an extremely talented two-way player, consistently reaching the 100s on the radar gun while also playing elite defense at shortstop. While it’s widely expected that he’ll be a starting pitcher as a pro, it will be interesting to see what the Reds ultimately decide to do.
Greene also provides tremendous intrigue because of the potential star power he could provide as an African-American in a league that is starving for diversity. Greene attended the MLB Urban Youth Academy in Compton, and earlier this year he participated in the inaugural edition of the “Dream Series,” an event designed to provide exposure to minority pitchers and catchers.
Greene’s alma mater is most well-known for its football program, but Notre Dame has also produced several MLB stars, most notably Jack McDowell and Giancarlo Stanton.
Despite the fact that he’s just 17 years old, Greene is expected to advance through the minors rather quickly if he ends up pitching as a pro. If he plays shortstop, his progression would likely be a bit slower, and the window would remain open for him to become a pitcher at some point if he struggled as a hitter.