Red Sox 2017 Draft Preview: 5 possible first-round picks
By Mike El-Far
Keston Hiura is a second baseman/outfielder that plays at the University of California at Irvine. The 20-year old has received a lot of praise by many draft experts. Some have even proclaimed that he might have one of the best two or three bats in this draft.
In many mock drafts, Hiura is slotted to be picked by Boston at 24. Both Bleacher Report and ESPN have him at that slot. It seems to be the consensus that if Hiura is available at 24, Boston will draft him.
Now, you are probably wondering why Hiura would fall to 24 in the draft? He has one of the most polished bats in college, that should be a very high pick. Well, with every player, there are both positives and negatives.
The negatives for Hiura are big. It seems to be basically a foregone conclusion that he needs Tommy John Surgery. That would essentially keep Hiura out of action until probably 2019. So anyone who takes Hiura must factor in his injury problem.
Also, he mainly played DH this season, due to the injury. While he can play second base and he’s an outfielder, his defense is his worst tool by a fair amount. Many analysts have him as a fringe MLB defender, so teams have to be very high on his offensive talent.
Injury or not, Hiura is one of the best pure hitters in the draft. He hit .330 with 7 home runs and 52 RBI’s in 56 games this season. While the injury is something to monitor going forward, if Hiura falls to Boston at 24, they shouldn’t pass up on this kid. He very well could be everything Boston wants in a future replacement to Dustin Pedroia.