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► Reports and Scouting:
Role: First Division Regular
Risk: High – Moniak is still physically underdeveloped, and some worry that his frame won’t be able to take enough muscle to be an impact offensive player. While he is a very good hitter, his swing is not geared for power. His defense and speed should give him enough upside to be a very good major leaguer, even if he never grows into a star level talent.
Summary: A terrible 2015 Phillies season earned the Phillies the top pick in the draft, but by the time draft day came around, there was not a consensus #1 pick. In other words, there wasn’t a major league ready superstar waiting for the Phillies. The Phillies took this as an opportunity to snag the top player on their board and still have the bonus money to sign Kevin Gowdy and others later. Moniak had the best hit tool among high school hitters, with some scouts putting a future plus plus grade on it. Moniak is a smooth center fielder with an above average to plus arm and plus speed. Moniak’s only weakness is his power. Part of the problem is that Moniak is skinny, both in terms of muscle he still has to put on and lack of places to put the muscle. The other problem is his swing. The very parts of his swing that allow him to make plenty of contact also limit his power output. Moniak’s swing is geared towards line drive and all fields contact. He does not get a lot of loft to his swing, and he doesn’t drive the ball well. The Phillies think that Moniak can hit 20 home runs a year at his peak, but many find that optimistic. The argument for Moniak’s power development is that his feel for hitting is going to lead to quality contact. As he gets stronger, he may not hit bombs, but that quality contact will lead to a decent home run rate. Moniak has been knocked for not being a transcendent superstar, but his hit tool and defense give him a high floor, and they also clear a path to stardom.
2017 Outlook: The Phillies have already said that Moniak is going to Lakewood, and J.P. Crawford has proven that a polished high school hitter can reach Clearwater in their first full year. Regardless of where he ends his year, Moniak is going to need to fight off fatigue after a long season.