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2015 MLB Draft Profile: Andrew Benintendi, OF, University of Arkansas

A fast rising draft eligible sophomore that offers a rare combination of tools and production out of the SEC.

Ryan Dunsmore


Few players in the 2015 draft have elevated their stock as much as Andrew Benintendi. The Arkansas Razorbacks centerfielder is a draft-eligible sophomore and has performed amongst the best of the SEC, after all he was named the SEC player of the year.

He's a rare combination of skills and tools that teams have taken notice of. After a disappointing freshman year, he made the difficult decision to stay on campus for the summer to work on his own body in preparation for his sophomore year. It paid off. As he gained at least ten pounds of muscle, power became a legitimate facet of his offensive profile. Unfortunately it will be tough to know just how much since the power is up all the way through the NCAA's due to new baseballs.

Across the board, Benintendi grades out at least average for every tool. He has the power to be a corner outfielder. The speed and fielding to be stick in centerfield. He can hit for average. His weakest tool is his average grade arm.

This season he has hit .390/.491/.723 with 18 home runs and 22 stolen bases in 26 attempts. The plate discipline is also there as he had 42 walks and 30 strikeouts in 260 plate appearances.That comes to a 16% walk-rate and 11.5.% strikeout rate.

Scouting wise, he has a very smooth swing from the left side. He has a line-drive oriented approach but has the hands to pull the ball when the opportunity is there. He's got some bat waggle and has closed set-up which could cause some issues against elite velocity at times. However, he has a controlled stride and uses his hips well to get a strong weight shift that helps create some of his power.


His floor is a versatile reserve outfielder capable of filling in at every position in the outfield. There's a chance that his defense does hold up in centerfield making him nothing more than a fill in for center. The arm would also prevent him to be a full-time right-fielder. The bonus is that he has some pop that could be useful off the bench.


I can see a guy who has the upside in his bat to maybe be a 2-hole hitter. He's not going to be a cleanup guy because he doesn't have elite power. But, with hit hitting abilities and plate discipline he will be a top of the order bat. It's just whether his power will be enough for a 3-hole.

Projected Draft Round

He's pretty much solidified himself as a first rounder. With him being a draft-eligible sophomore and posting the numbers he did in the SEC, there's reason to believe that there's even more in the tank. He still has more to dream on than most college bats. His young age, statistical performance, and overall tool set makes him a sleeper for several teams in the top 10.

Will he sign?

He has a wide range of picks in mock drafts which makes him hard to peg. He has a lot of leverage given his status as a draft eligible sophomore but that will also make him a more intriguing commodity and higher on draft boards. Rumors are that if he's selected where some of the higher mocks are, he'll sign.


Draft to the Show

Andrew Benintendi – CF – Arkansas – Height: 5’10" – Weight: 180 – B/T: L/L

I consider myself a sharp of sorts and I’d hazard a guess that Benintendi, a redshirt sophomore, is the odds-on favorite to win SEC Player of the Year with the numbers he’s putting up. He’s batting .381/.490/.723 in 197 PA, leads the country with 14 HR, and has drawn a sabermetrically pleasing 33 walks to 25 strikeouts. Oh, and ya know, swiped 20 of 23 bases too. He’s basically the college version of Mike Trout trapped in Cody Ross’s body.

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D1 Baseball

"He’s a quick-twitch athlete with real strength in his wrists. Has feel to steal bases and makes adjustments at the plate," a coach who recently faced Arkansas said about Benintendi. "He’s just got a really good all around game. He is going to hit a ton of doubles and when he gets on a roll he will hit homers in bunches."