June 10 (UPI) — Miami Marlins CEO Derek Jeter wasn’t afraid to speak up during the 2018 MLB Draft.
The future Hall of Famer was participating in the process for the first time as a member of a front office. Miami selected outfielder Connor Scott with the No. 16 overall pick on June 4.
“I make suggestions,” Jeter said Friday, after Scott was introduced to fans at Marlins Park. “We want to build this organization with athletes. Obviously I’ve said from day one that player development is huge. We want to get great athletes. When you give great athletes to our player development staff, then I like our chances.”
“I was very vocal. I’ve learned a lot about the players throughout the process. We have a scouting department. We have a player deveopment staff that knows lot more than I do, but I know the direction that we’re going and it’s very important for us to draft as many athletes as possible.”
Scott, listed at 6-foot-4, 180-pounds, was the third-best outfielder in the draft, according to Baseball America. The (Tampa) Plant High School product grew up playing shortstop and idolizing the former New York Yankees captain. He’s also a southpaw with a low 90s fastball and has a decent curveball, according to an MLB.com scouting report.
The 18-year-old refers to himself as a five-tool prospect.
“I’m big on leadership and being a good teammate, being a good person,” Scott said Friday at Marlins Park, while seating between Jeter and Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill. “I’m a five-tool player. I think I got all the attributes I can give on the baseball field.”
Jeter mentioned that he wants the Marlins to be strong up the middle and have a lot of athletes.
“You can do a lot of things with athletes,” Jeter said. “We want guys to put pressure on defense. We want guys that are able to play defense. We have athletes … I’m not just saying this because I was a short stop, but a lot of times, you put some of your best athletes at shortstop, you put some of you best athletes in center field. So yeah, we want to get those guys and develop them and figure out where they play.”
The Marlins picked Encinal High School shortstop Osiris Johnson in the second round. They picked catcher Will Banfield next. In total, Miami drafted six outfielders, four catchers, four shortstops, while filling out their selections with pitching prospects.
“I was completely a part of the draft in 1992, but I was on the other side of it,” Jeter said. “It’s a lot different than you think because you get your hopes up high. I’ll tell you this, Connor Scott was someone that we targeted before the draft started so we got exactly who we wanted.”