Keoni Cavaco, SS, Eastlake HS (California)
MLB Pipeline Grades, 28th Overall Prospect
Hit: 45 | Power: 55 | Run: 60 | Arm: 60 | Field: 50 | Overall: 50
Fangraphs Future Grades, 22nd Overall Prospect
Hit: 50 | Power: 55 | Run: 55 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50 | Future Value: 45
Ke-Oh-Knee Cah-Vah-Co. Get used to saying it. No one in the draft has had more helium than Keoni Cavaco, who shot up draft ranks last fall and then again this spring.
On offense the thing that really shows is Cavaco’s power, as he able to tap into most of his raw power that may eventually grade out as plus (60 grade). He is also a plus runner now that is able to use his speed to stretch extra base hits and steal. He has a solid frame now (6’0” 185lbs) and if he fills it out more he would lose a step or two but likely add even more power. He does have some swing and miss in his game, he struckout far too often against the mediocre competition he faced in a mid-tier California high school league this spring. If he can get that under control, he could really shoot up prospect rankings.
Defensively Cavaco boasts a strong arm (93 mph off the mound) to go with his great range, and the Twins drafted him as a SS instead of a 3B. He could play 2B or 3B, with his arm, and if he keeps his speed as he ages he has the athleticsm to handle all three outfield positions.
What a birthday present for Keoni Cavaco, who just turned 18 yesterday. Seriously! He joins Royce Lewis as a top draftee for the Twins with a June birthday, meaning he will always be a bit young for his level if he is pushed as aggresively as Lewis was, making it to Single-A Cedar Rapids just months after being drafted.
The thing I like about Cavaco is that the combination of his arm and his athleticism offer a ton of flexibility.He will start his career playing SS, but moving to 3B would be a solid move since we don’t have a lot of big name prospects that play the hot corner outside of Jose Miranda.
If Cavaco can become a real hitter, his potential is sky high, and that type of pick makes sense for where the Twins are at currently. The Twins have a number of players either signed long term or under team control for a few seasons, and a deep farm system of players that will either make our team or be traded to fill holes. With that depth, we have the flexibility to take a high risk, high reward player like Keoni Cavaco while putting very little stress on him to perform immediately because of the likes of other 1st round picks like Royce Lewis, Alex Kirilloff, and Trevor Larnach.
The Twins add another young, exciting player with potential while the big league team has the best record in baseball. How exciting!