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The Cubs select shortstop Ed Howard with the 16th pick in the 2020 MLB Draft

The Cubs take a local kid with their first selection.

Major League Baseball Archive: Under Armour All-American Game Photo by Stephen Green/MLB Photos via Getty Images

With the 16th pick in the 2020 MLB Draft, the Cubs have selected shortstop Ed Howard out of Mount Carmel High School in Chicago, Illinois.

While the shortstop class in this draft is weak, one of the names that has been popping up all spring in the grouping is Ed Howard. His calling card as a draft prospect is his defense which ranks among the best in the class whether you are looking at high school or college. His footwork and range at short is at least plus and he pairs that with a strong, accurate arm which gives everyone the feeling that he will stick at short. His bat is more untested and raw, but he has performed well against top competition in a small sample size and he has good feel for his hands during his swing and his approach is advanced for his age.

With Howard, you are banking on projection with the understanding that, at the very least, his defense limits his floor a decent bit. At 6’2 and 185, there is room for muscle on his frame which has scouts wondering if he can grow into above average power. However, he does not possess that power right now and his ability to handle elite velocity up and out of the zone is an unknown that has some evaluators a little spooked. However, if he can figure things out at the plate paired with his defensive acumen, Howard may end up as the best deal of the draft.