Weight: 204 lbs
Drafted: 4th Round in 2006 out of Arizona State University
Tools: Curtis is an excellent athlete. His range in centerfield is superb; he is probably the fourth fastest prospect in the organization behind Brett Gardner, Justin Christian, and Austin Jackson. He has an excellent approach to the strike zone (walking more times than he struck out in college). His power is very weak, although he's not Joey Gathright. He arm is strong for a centerfielder. His smooth swing and mature approach will allow him to hit for high averages in the major leagues.
Performance: Curtis played at Arizona State for three years, with a great deal of success. In 173 games, he hit .328/.426/.460 with 118 BBs, 107 Ks, 13 HR and 40 2bs. He stole 50 bases. He transitioned well to the pitching-dominated Staten Island Yankees, hitting .311/.361/.437 (including a 3 game stint with the GCL Yankees). He only stole 5 bases in 47 games. He cut his K rate down, striking out only 19 times (walking 13 times). His defense matched his reputation. He helped lead an excellent Staten Island team to the Ny-Penn League Championship.
Outlook: Curtis is basically the outfield version of Mitch Hilligoss, with a little more athleticism. He is about as safe a 4th round pick as they come. He will probably never develop much of a home run swing, but is solid in all other aspects of the game. He should move quickly, in a similar way that we saw Brett Gardner move this year. He will start the year in Tampa, and if he does well he will end it in Trenton. We could see him in New York in September of 2008. He lacks the ability to be a star, but his plate discipline and athleticism will ensure him to be at least a major league bench player some day.
Grades: Ceiling C+, Health A-, Comparison: Dave Roberts.
Friday, December 29, 2006