Height: 6' 2"
Weight: 195 lbs.
HS: Plum High School (New Kensington, PA)
College Commitment: Liberty University
Alex Kirilloff is the son of renowned hitting coach Dave Kirilloff, whose presence on YouTube (not to mention his academy, "Baseball 19", in Tarentum, PA) is palpable. He's a left-handed hitting, left-handed throwing outfielder with marginal speed but solid tools otherwise, including a strong arm and projectable raw power thanks to explosive bat speed through the zone.
Kirilloff is rightly considered a cold-weather player, but he does have quite the track record on the summer showcase circuit - that, along with being raised around the sport by a man who runs a baseball academy and has been coaching hitting longer than Alex has been alive, are certainly noteworthy pedigree/performance marks that bear mentioning.
As you can see in this video, his swing - particularly his load - can tend to get a little long, and his mechanics are a bit busy, but it's not egregiously so. He certainly appears to have a fly ball-heavy trajectory on his swing, which engenders itself to the idea of home runs as he fills out physically, complementing his already-excellent bat speed.
Prospect Pipeline video:
Alex Kirilloff is also regarded as particularly devout in his religious views, with John Sickels going so far as to say it's one of the first things that comes up in conversation about the young man, and appears dutiful and devoted as a son:
Here's another video, this time showcasing his first batting practice of 2016:
Kirilloff has been linked with Blake Rutherford and Mickey Moniak as the "big three" in the way of high school outfield prospects in this year's draft class, with some outlets hinting, if not actually saying outright, that Kirilloff might be a better target than Rutherford. The fact that the comparison is even being made should tell even the least-discerning reader that Alex Kirilloff is a very highly regarded hitting prospect. He is expected to go in the first round of the draft by most outlets and pundits, and has been linked to the Astros at seventeen already. It is worth noting, however, that ESPN's Keith Law projects Kirilloff more as a supplemental first round pick (ESPN insider subscription required, sorry) than a mid-to-high first rounder, so not everyone is quite sold on his ability to make contact, particularly against higher-velocity pitching.
Is He Signable?
He is committed to Liberty University, but it seems that most pundits agree that he seems to be signable enough to warrant a selection in the middle of the first round, with most picks for him in recent mock drafts showing anywhere from fourteenth overall to seventeenth overall, where the Astros pick.
In his own words, it appears he might be amenable to signing if he were to be drafted as highly as he's being projected to be:
"I’m trying to enjoy every bit of this [draft process]," said Kirilloff. "Some of it can be redundant, but you can’t take it for granted. … It’s nice in theory to be a first-round pick. But my goal is to play the best I can. If that takes me to the first round or if it falls me to the second or 40th, all I can do is my best and make good decisions."
- Alex Kirilloff, Excerpt from Mike White's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Piece on March 24, 2016
It's hard not to dream on a pure left-handed swing with so much loft, bat speed, and raw power. A career as a middle of the order corner outfield (or first base, where he also has experience and grades out as plus, defensively) bat is within the scope of possibility for him.
While his ceiling is sky high, the history of prep school hitters keeps one somewhat grounded in the realization that his floor is very low, as well. "Busted Double-A prospect" low, possibly.
Should The Astros Consider Him?
If Alex Kirilloff is still available at 1-17, I would personally be a bit surprised if Jeff Luhnow and Mike Elias didn't snap him up under the "Best Player Available" mantra. He has the low floor to go with the high ceiling, but he does have a couple factors that help mitigate the odds some in his favor: the cold weather player status, the summer league success, a father who is a hitting coach who has raised him and groomed him, a strong personal work ethic and a 3.7 GPA, and a wholesome, respectful demeanor that at the very least doesn't seem like it would detract from a clubhouse. The glowing reviews he's earned from evaluators, teammates, and coaches, however, indicate that he could very well be a large positive in the clubhouse.
There's more to it than those things, of course, but skimming the surface based on what info is available to us, he looks to be one of the better players who could be available at 1-17.