The Cardinals and first-round draft pick Nick Plummer have agreed to terms, writes Tony Paul of the Detroit News. Plummer, a Detroit-area native, tells Paul that he will sign for the slot value of $2.124MM. Plummer will fly to Florida on either Friday or Monday to complete his physical and make the signing official.
A center fielder out of Brother Rice High School in Michigan, Plummer was a consensus first-round talent, although his specific ranking on top prospect lists had some variance. Baseball America ranked Plummer 11th among potential draftees, and ESPN’s Keith Law considered him the draft’s 14th-best prospect. Meanwhile, Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com pegged him 27th, and Fangraphs’ Kiley McDaniel had him at No. 30.
BA’s scouting report notes that Plummer has the bat speed and leverage to generate plus pull power and an up-the-middle approach with good plate coverage. Each of the reports above mentions that because Plummer is more of an average runner and has questionable arm strength, a move from center field to left field could very well be needed down the line. Plummer’s bat appears to be his best asset, with Mayo and Callis referring to him as “one of the most dangerous high school hitters in this draft,” and Law adding that there’s enough bat to profile as a regular even if he does move to left. McDaniel feels Plummer can eventually show 50-grade power with 55 speed (ratings on the 20-80 scouting scale).
Plummer becomes the first of the players from the 2015 first-round to come to terms on an agreement. Upon signing his contract, he’ll report to the team’s Spring Training facility and then begin playing with St. Louis’ rookie-level affiliate in the Appalachian League.