#23 – OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis

nieuwenhuis-stanceBats/Throws: L/R

Height/Weight: 6’3”, 210 lbs

Acquired: 3rd Rd 2008 (Azusa Pacific)

Born: 8/7/87 (Ripon, CA)

Why Ranked Here: Nieuwenhuis has a big league frame with length and some room to fill out. He has big league tools, notably the speed, range and instincts to play center and the arm to play right. He has big league taste, listing sushi as his favorite food. Nieuwenhuis has a clean swing mechanically, and gap power right now.

2008: Nieuwenhuis was one of the most productive and consistent Brooklyn Cyclones, hitting for a modest average, reaching base and knocking some doubles.

Dr. Pangloss Says: Nieuwenhuis’s athleticism will allow him to hold down an MLB centerfield job, or at least qualify as a 4th OF who hits righties. .

On the Flipside: Nieuwenhuis did not hit lefties (.221/.329/.324 in 68 AB) as well as he hit righties (.295/.354/.419 in 217 AB). If he fails to improve against southpaws, he will find it difficult to hold down an everyday job. Moreover, if he can’t play center everyday, without the power for right, he falls into tweener and fourth OF land.

Projected 2009 Start: St. Lucie CF