In the fifth round, the San Diego Padres selected prep infielder, Jonny Homza, out of South Anchorage High School in, yes, Alaska.
A.J. Preller and his scouting team look under every stone in search of talent and they may have found a diamond in the rough in Homza. He is a two-time Alaska high school player of the year recipient. Alaska isn’t a baseball hotbed, but the skill set is there.
He should further strengthen the Padres’ farm system with his skill in the infield.
The young man is raw, but should be able to progress through the system. You have to figure he did not play a ton of baseball in Alaska, so his skills need to be refined. A professional coaching staff can do wonders for this young man.
There is a common theme here as the Padres selected five high school athletes prior to this fifth round pick. The last two picks are high-upside players that could turn into something special. Mason House and Sam Keating are both projects, but they have decent ceilings.
The theme of athleticism and the best player on the board was addressed again as the team selected a sixth straight high school athlete.
The Padres will have a huge haul of talent in Tri-City, Fort Wayne, and Lake Elsinore in the coming years.
Taking a look at his video, you will clearly see that he has ability. His swing is a bit long, but he has quick hands. With the proper guidance, he could progress.
Hozma played shortstop in high school, but the Padres look like they envision him as a third baseman, though the kid does have the ability to pitch as well. He has a fastball that touches the mid 90’s. The Padres clearly want him to focus on hitting though. He makes consistent hard contact and has some real pop, so the upside is huge here.
A.J. Preller is surely happy with what he sees from this young man. He drafted him on his birthday.
Hozma turned 18 today. Happy Birthday, Jonny.
The next few picks will trickle in and we will keep you up to date here at EVT.