TAFT, California —— At the top of this post, watch our scouting video of College of the Sequoias freshman shortstop Wyatt Tilley, taken from his at-bats in a recent Giants’ road game against Central Valley Conference opponent Taft College.
Wyatt Tilley scouting report — notes & observations
A three-sport star in high school at Visalia’s Golden West, Tilley is a local kid who is already making an impact on the Giants’ roster as a freshman starter, hitting .318 through his first 23 games—including a video game-like .500/.536/.583 slash line in Central Valley Conference play this spring.
Numbers tell only part of the story, but it’s no wonder Tilley is putting them up. He has a classic, smooth left-handed swing, and good bat speed lets him turn on pitches thrown on the inner half with ease. His approach is more mature than just being a dead-pull slugger, though, and Tilley shows good plate coverage and the ability to go the other way with authority. More of a gap-to-gap hitter than a power threat right now, he has a body type that might grow into a few more long balls as he continues to fill out and strengthen, but that’s secondary to his strength: barreling up the ball and slapping line drives around the field. Patient enough to wait for his pitch, he’s already proving to be a tough out, and that maturity in his junior college approach will bode well for his future.
In the infield, Tilley is a good fit at shortstop right now, with decent arm strength and above-average range for the position. As is the case with many shortstops trying to make the jump to four-year ball or the pros, Tilley may soon end up being moved off the spot in favor of third base or another role instead, but for now, Tilley’s home is here. I like the way he works on defense, and I think he covers enough ground to (at the very least) warrant a legitimate shot to win the position wherever his next stop may be.
More broadly, Tilley’s all-around athleticism will continue to pay dividends as he now settles into a high-level baseball-only life, and only one (semi-serious) question remains: will he continue to hit .500 throughout the entire conference schedule?
Wyatt Tilley scouting report — Multimedia
Again, for video, you can see Tilley hitting in four at-bats against Taft in the video at the very top of this post. If you’re looking for specific swing mechanics to get a sense of his physicality at the plate, here are our set of Tilley GIFs from that same March 9 game against Taft:
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