The Blue Jays and the rest of Major League Baseball are preparing behind the scenes for the 2022 Amateur Draft. Recently, I released a list of eligible Canadian draft prospects for this year. With northern-born players, the Blue Jays have backyard access with regards to information and interest in such players compared to the rest of the MLB.
One of the Canadian names that are top on my list of draft interest is Malik Williams, who I featured for last year’s selection.
Malik is a senior, soon-to-be graduate of Lipscomb University, NCAA division 1 out of the Atlantic Sun Conference (ASUN), playing 1st base and in the outfield. In my strong opinion, Williams is the strongest senior offensive Canadian draft prospect in this class, and one of the most productive hitters for Lipscomb and for all of the ASUN Conference. His college career started at Johnson County Community College where he lit up the NJCAA with 27 home runs and 132 RBI, with a rank at 11th overall for batting average. In 2020, he took his talents to 1 University Park Drive in Nashville Tennessee, to be an offensive powerhouse for the Bisons.
How would the Blue Jays benefit from drafting Malik Williams?
Let the numbers speak for themselves here: in 2022, Williams appeared in 58 games for Lipscomb University with 229 at-bats, 46 runs, 83 hits, 66 RBI, and 14 home runs. He walked 24-times, striking out a total of 36-times. Malik’s 2022 offensive run was crucial for the overall performance of Lipscomb, leading up to and during their playoff run. His at-bats were quality, with an aggressive approach, and successful outcomes; these at-bats resulted in 14 home runs, with more than 40% of them being in crucial game situations.
His NCAA totals were 446 at-bats with 72 runs, 151 hits, 103 RBI, and 20 home runs. He’s totalled four seasons with 875 at-bats, 311 hits, 47 home runs, and 235 RBI, with a final .355 batting average.
The 6-4”, 241-pounder 1st baseman/outfielder displays stern athleticism, where raw strength/power. Again, RAW power. He hits the ball the hardest and the furthest, being a threat for extra-base hits and home runs. Williams can see the ball very well with excellent pitch recognition, showing a ton of patience. We’ve seen home runs sprayed to all fields, and extra-base hits go gap-to-gap. As a ballpark figure, we’ve seen recent blast-motion data showing an average of 103mph to a max of 111mph exit velocity on recent home runs, dating between February and March of 2022. Metrics also include a 24-28 degrees launch angle, with 397-401 feet in distance, and between 4.3 seconds – 5.5 seconds in flight time.
The Blue Jays can add power to their farm system by selecting Malik Williams. As a progressive player, Williams will quickly maneuver the Blue Jays ranks; this is a guy who can be a starting 1st baseman and 3-4 stick in any Major League lineup down the road. Being Canadian, this would be a very fitting pick for the Blue Jays. Malik has signed to play in the MLB Draft League.