A skilled shortstop who readily projects as an above average fielder at the position at the big league level, Swanson is the rare college up-the-middle player who also possesses great offensive tools. A Georgia native who Vandy lists at 6'1", 190 lbs., Swanson has been praised for basically every part of his game, from defense to hitting for contact and power to his work ethic and clubhouse presence. The 2014 College World Series' Most Outstanding Player, Dansby has carried that momentum into 2015, slashing .347/.438/.620 with 34 extra base hits (9 homers) and a 36/35 K/BB ratio. He has also swiped 12 bags in 14 attempts.
Swanson has a great baseball body which he shows excellent control over, moving comfortably to either side of his body with smooth hips and great footwork. Swanson exhibits soft hands and has an exceptional throwing release. He looks extremely comfortable in the field at all times. An excellent shortstop, he is a virtual lock to stick at the position in the pros.
As a hitter, Swanson looks just as fluid. His body moves in excellent harmony, and he employs a simple setup and a line drive approach. Swanson is the kind of hitter who excels at getting the barrel of the bat to the ball and making hard contact. He keeps his hands in tight and covers the plate very well. His timing as a hitter is very impressive, he keeps his lower body quiet and has a quick trigger. Though his approach is geared towards contact, Swanson is capable of getting loft under the ball and depositing it into the seats when he gets his pitch.
For a college player, Swanson shows a patient approach and does a good job of laying off of pitches out of the zone. He can get fooled by good breaking stuff at times, but the swing and miss in his game is more of a product of pitch recognition than his swing or bat speed, both of which grade out positively. If Swanson can make strides in the necessary areas, he is easy to envision as a major league #2 hitter. Given the praise he receives for his work ethic and smarts, most bet on him making those improvements.
Swanson is a complete player who can generate value with his bat, glove and legs. His floor is very high and he projects easily as a major leaguer, but many (myself included) have undersold his upside at times. Swanson definitely has All-Star potential with some added polish to his game.
Projected Draft Round
Will he sign?
Swanson could easily be the #1 overall selection in June and is a lock to sign.
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