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Pirates Pick Barrett Barnes In Compensation Round

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With the No. 45 selection in the compensation round (the pick they got to compensate for the loss of Ryan Doumit), the Pirates have selected Barrett Barnes, an outfielder from Texas Tech. MLB.com ranks him the 57th-best prospect available, while Baseball America ranks him No. 42, so this is right around where he probably should have expected to be taken. It sounds like he'll be a project -- he's very raw. It also sounds like he'll probably be a left fielder in the long run. But he has power and speed.

He hit .325/.419/.597 this year; the Red Raiders hit .292/.377/.418 as a team, so Barnes' numbers were good but not spectacular. It looks like this pick amounts to a lottery ticket on a player who's widely viewed as having at least some tools, which certainly could be a reasonable use of a draft pick this late in the game.

Here's a long report on Barnes.

Barnes' bat gets good reviews, as he is seen as having good bat speed that should translate as he moves to the professional level. There are questions about Barnes' ability to consistently make contact as he moves up, which would mean elevated strikeout levels that would limit what he can do as far as his batting average goes, but Barnes has shown good patience at the college level, so there's the potential that his walk rate could keep his OBP respectable. BA rates Barnes as having plus power, while ESPN's future projection on Barnes is that he's just going to have average power...the team that snags Barnes is likely going to be a team that agrees with BA's take and views him as a potential power bat.

Barnes is currently a center fielder, but questions about his ability to stick there, and what's regarded as a mediocre arm, will probably push him to left. He'll need to hit to be of much value there, but it sounds like he has at least some chance of doing that. He won't be 21 until next month, so he'll have a fair amount of time before he reaches his ceiling. Overall, this looks like a decent value for the No. 45 overall selection.

Here's some video: