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Legends On Deck

Prospects On Deck: 2B Keston Hiura – Brewers

In baseball, there is no such thing as a sure thing, especially when we are talking about prospects. However, every now and then a guy comes along with a certain tool (or tools) that are so good that I just can’t see a reality in which he doesn’t turn into a productive major leaguer. Keston Hiura is one of those guys. If I was starting a top prospect list that ranked players by who had the highest floor and not necessarily the highest ceiling, Hiura would be at the top of that list.

Chances are you’ve heard about Hiura by now and you know that his money maker is his bat control and hit tool. Disagree with me if you want, but in my eyes, Hiura was hands down the top bat coming into the 2017 MLB draft out of UC Irvine. During his junior season with the Anteaters, the Valencia, CA native led the entire country in batting average and on base percentage while earning First Team All Big West Conference honors. That impressive showing was enough for the Milwaukee Brewers to make Hiura the ninth overall pick in last year’s draft.

The 21 year old, 22 in just a couple of days, has flown through the minors and found himself in Double-A Biloxi after just 92 professional games. What is even more impressive is that he did that, and maintained his reputation at the plate, all while battling a couple of injuries. One of those injuries, an elbow issue around draft time, caused Hiura to spend the majority of his time as a DH. Since being called up to Double-A however, he has been able to be back at second base on defense for 40 of the 44 games he has appeared in with the Shuckers.

So far in 2018, Hiura has posted an .868 OPS across High-A and Double-A. The numbers have dropped slightly since the promotion, but part of me feels like that has more to do with him being back out in the field full time more than anything else. I don’t think he will have any trouble facing high level pitching.

It wouldn’t be surprising to see the Brewers be aggressive with Hiura. It is clear they are going all in this season, but with the trade for Mike Moustakas and the move of Travis Shaw from third to second, the infield now looks a little crowded. An argument could be made that you wouldn’t want to see Hiura called up if he is just going to play a bench role, especially with how little experience he has at the pro level. But, when a club is fighting for a playoff berth as we knock on the door of August, you want the best roster you can construct, even if it does take reps away from some guys. If the Brewers fall out of contention as we close in on September, don’t expect to see Hiura donning a Brewers uniform, but if they find themselves still in it, I think you can’t deny him a spot during September call ups.

Jake Berry
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Jake Berry

Contributing Writer at Legends On Deck®
Jake resides in Carrollton, GA and loves everything baseball. He is a lifelong Atlanta Braves fan and enjoys traveling to watch their Minor League teams. He graduated from the University of West Georgia with a Bachelor's Degree in Sport Management. Jake is also a certified personal trainer and has a passion for fitness and weight lifting. You can find his personal site at berrysbaseball.com

You can also reach out to Jake at jberry@legendsondeck.com
Jake Berry
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