Arkansas junior first baseman Andy Wilkins has signed a professional contract with the Chicago White Sox, officially ending his career with the Razorbacks. Wilkins signed the contract Wednesday and was assigned to the White Sox’ rookie affiliate in Great Falls, Mont., Thursday.
|Comments: As a sophomore in 2009, Wilkins was named the NCAA Norman Regional’s Most Outstanding Player and was a member of the All-Tournament Team. He was a 25th-round selection of the Texas Rangers in 2007 but did not sign.|
From the college baseball blog:
He is from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma and attended Broken Arrow High School. He had an outstanding high school career as a senior batted .538 (63 for 117) with 18 doubles, a triple and 12 home runs. He also scored 52 runs and drove in 53 his final year with a .635 on-base percentage and slugged 1.017. He also hit .496 as a junior with a school record 17 home runs and 16 doubles while scoring 30 runs and driving in 60. He finished the season with a 1.109 slugging and .519 on-base percentage. He was named a Louisville Slugger High School All-American twice and rated as the 11th best prospect out of Oklahoma by Baseball America. …Wilkins had a solid freshman season with the Razorbacks as he missed nearly a month with a rib cage injury but finished the season with a .331 for the season with 45 hits, 38 RBI, 11 doubles and eight home runs in 35 games. He was primarily used at first base but also appeared in six games at third and five as the DH. He spent the summer of 2008 with the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox in the Cape Cod Baseball League where he played in 40 games hitting .271 with five homers and 26 RBI.
Andy had a solid 2009 campaign as he hit .319 with a team high 19 homers and 58 RBI playing in all 65 Razorbacks games. He started 55 games at first, six at third, and the other four games at DH. He spent the summer of 2009 with the USA National Team where they went 19-5 with victories in the World Baseball Challenge and a trip to play the Japanese College All-Stars. He finished the summer with a .232 average with two homers and 16 RBI in 24 games.
The scouting reports indicate that Wilkins has very good power potential, and this is backed up by the college numbers, but the scouts also see holes in Wilkins’ swing and suggest that he could have major problems hitting quality breaking pitches. Scouts also see him as a player who could take a while to adjust to hitting with a wood bat, although he put in a decent showing at the ’08 Cape Cod League hitting .271/.356/.450 with Yarmouth-Dennis. Defensively he is at least average at 1B. General consensus had Wilkins listed as a 7th to 10th round prospect, making him a slight overdraft here in the 5th round.
He’s big and when he’s on, he can crush the ball, hitting .276 with 16 homers and 68 RBIs for the Razorbacks. But, he’s streaky and that seems to be the biggest knock on Wilkins. If the Sox can get a measure of consistency from him he could be impressive.