Nick Allen | SS
The 18-year-old Allen is currently hitting .357/.471/.589 in 17 games at Francis Parker High School in San Diego. He’s committed to Southern California.
At a listed 5-foot-8 and 158 lbs., the biggest knock on Allen is his size. There has long been a bias against players that small regardless of position. Allen is a no doubt shortstop long-term with great range and a strong throwing arm. He regularly makes difficult plays look routine. At the plate, he’s a right-handed hitter with gap power and more of a slash-and-dash approach, which better allows him to use his very good speed. Not many expect Allen to hit for much power. That’s not surprising given his size. In addition to the defensive skills and contact ability, Allen gets top of the scale grades for his baseball instincts and makeup. He works extremely hard and knows the game.
In their latest draft prospects rankings Keith Law, MLB.com, and Baseball America all ranked Allen in the same basic spot: 27th, 28th, and 29th, respectively. Put a few more inches on him and he’d probably be a slam dunk first rounder. My guess is Allen ends up going in the second round, or maybe to a team with multiple first round picks (Cubs, Rangers, Blue Jays), because clubs won’t want to roll the dice with their top pick on a kid Allen’s size. The Yankees have the 16th (first round) and 54th (second round) overall picks. Allen seems more likely to be a target at 54 than 16.