With the 36th overall pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, the Los Angeles Dodgers picked outfielder Kendall George out of Atascocita High School in California.
The Dodgers pick was moved back 10 spots because they exceeded the luxury tax threshold by more than $40 million in 2022. With their pick, they definitely went off the board a bit and grabbed a speedy prep outfielder that not many had as a first rounder in this year's draft.
Everything you need to know about the Dodgers first round pick,
Pre-draft Prospect Rankings:
Baseball America ($): 114
MLB Pipeline: 65
Keith Law (The Athletic) ($): N/A
Scouting Report: If you are looking for speed, Kendall George is your guy as he is an 80 runner right now. A terror on the basepaths, George does not have much power to speak of but he gets on base at a high rate. He has added a little bulk more recently, but this is a guy who focuses on putting the ball in play, not swinging at bad pitches, and letting his speed do the work.
Defensively, he doesn't have much of an arm, but his double-plus speed allows him to make plays in center field that he frankly shouldn't be able to. His bat and arm don't really profile in a corner spot, but he should be able to play center field well with some coaching in the minor leagues.
Reaction: This was one of the bigger reaches in the early portion of the 2023 draft. George is probably the fastest player in the draft and with the new rules in place, that speed carries a higher premium these days. However, George does seem like a limited offensive player unless he grows into more power.
One important note: there is probably not an organization that knows George better than the Dodgers as he is a California product. A lot of folks may be raising their eyebrows at this pick, but the Dodgers are a very smart team and know this player very well.