Prospect Profile: Buck Shaw

Prospect Profile: Buck Shaw

At some point in the future, the Phillies will have to face life without Jim Thome. Yes, eventually, that day will come. With that in mind, fans can turn their attention to young first basemen who are just starting their professional careers in the Phillies organization as they search for their "first baseman of the future". One of the prime candidates could well be Gulf Coast League first baseman Buck Shaw.

Buck Shaw played his college ball at tiny Connors State Community College in Oklahoma. Still, he attracted plenty of attention. Actually, the attention started during his high school years. The Anaheim Angels took Shaw with their 38th round pick in 2002, but he decided instead to go onto Connors State. With a successful career there, including hitting 10-66-.394 this past season, Shaw faced a decision; With a scholarship to Oklahoma State in hand, he entered the draft, but wound up turning down Oklahoma State to sign with the Phillies, who drafted him in the 21st round.

Shaw is one of the more athletic young first basemen in the Phillies organization. He handles the position well defensively and has enough athleticism to play a corner outfield spot if the Phillies decide to move him out of the infield. He also has a decent enough arm to handle a position change.

The Phillies believe that Shaw can develop plenty of power as he continues to develop, which would be a big help to an organization lacking in power hitters.

Year

Team

G

AB

R

H

2B

3B

HR

RBI

SB

CS

BB

KO

AVG

OBP

2004

GCL

46

159

24

41

8

1

8

30

5

0

17

25

.258

.328

Career

 

46

159

24

41

8

1

8

30

5

0

17

25

.258

.328

 

Batting and Power: For Shaw to develop more power, he'll need to improve on his bat speed. The Phillies were happy with his homerun output in the Gulf Coast League and believe it's a good start – after all, he did lead the team in homeruns – but they believe his power will improve with time. Shaw's plate discipline is decent and again, will likely improve with time. Improving his bat speed will likely help his average a little, too. Eventually, he should settle into a comfortable .260 to .270 range.

Base running and speed: Shaw doesn't exactly set things on fire with his blazing speed, but he has a knack for finding the right time to run. He was 5-for-5 in stolen bases in the GCL and is effective on the bases.

Defense: Above average skills and has the potential to move to the outfield if needed. Shaw's position may depend on how Carl Galloway progresses. Galloway isn't as skilled defensively and is likely locked into playing first base. If Galloway shows offensive talent, Shaw may move to the outfield to keep first base open for Galloway.

Projection: The Phillies believe that they may have found a sleeper in Shaw. It will be interesting to see where they start him for 2005; a spot at Lakewood isn't out of the question, but the Phillies tend to be cautious with young players. Certainly has the potential to be an above average major leaguer if all goes well.

Comparison: Tony Clark

ETA: 2009. May get a late-season look in 2008, with eyes on replacing Jim Thome. If Shaw progresses well, the timing on his arrival could be perfect.

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