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Padres welcome Hudson Head into vaunted system

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Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Following the conclusion of this year’s Rule Four Draft, I penned an in-depth look at Maurice Hampton, a prep outfielder whom the Padres selected in the 23rd round. Being that the Padres had drafted a spate of college seniors in rounds 4-10, consensus was that they were stockpiling bonus money in order to pursue high-potential, high-cost prep players like Hampton. Problem was, I was evaluating the wrong high-potential, high-cost player. D’oh.

John Hudson Head, of San Antonio, Texas, is now officially a member of the San Diego Padres organization.

Standing a slight 6’1, the 165-pound outfielder swings from the left side—and judging by the record-setting $3MM bonus he secured from San Diego, his representatives swung for the fences in securing a figure from the Padres that would justify forgoing Head’s collegiate commitment to Oklahoma.

Head’s alma mater of Churchill High isn’t known for producing big league talent (save for journeyman reliever Randy Choate), which, added to concerns over his strength of competition, could have led to his relatively low profile entering the draft. Nevertheless, the Padres selected him 84th overall, and then used nearly 1/3rd of their bonus pool to secure his services.

As for measurables, Head has been clocked at 6.63 for the 60-yard dash, which is a fantastic time for that drill and indicates potential for top-end foot-speed. At the plate, Head displays “advanced feel for hitting” in the words of Jim Callis, though he does utilize a leg kick that looks a little inconsistent in available online video. He projects for CF, with throws clocking at 85mph from the outfield—about average for kids at that position. Overall, Head fits the mould of recent A.J. Preller draftees like Xavier Edwards and C.J. Abrams—skinny, fast-as-hell youngsters who could someday provide the kind of table-setting that is becoming increasingly rare in today’s game.

What do you make of this signing? Leave your impressions, and all necessary double entendres, in the comments below.