As I highlighted in my previous draft profile article, it is becoming increasingly likely that the Atlanta Braves are going to select a position player in this year’s draft. At Battery Power we’ve already highlighted the likes of Aidan Miller and Bryce Eldridge amongst others. In this article we are going to cover another one of the draft’s premier offensive players in Wake Forest third baseman Brock Wilken.
Wilken is coming off of a fantastic junior season for the Demon Deacons where he had a triple slash line of .345/.506/.807 with 31 homers and 88 RBI’s. His plate discipline on the surface is also encouraging as he drew 69 walks in 66 games compared to 58 strikeouts. All of which are truly dominant numbers which in and of itself makes him an intriguing prospect, with the power being the real intrigue in his game. He has the potential when at his peak to hit 30 or more homers a season with 100 or more RBI’s.
All of that aside though, I do have some personal concern with the swing and miss in his game. As I discussed in my third baseman preview article, he played eight games against Clemson, Alabama and LSU in 2023. In those eight games he struck out 14 times in 33 at bats which is a 42 percent strikeout rate, which is extremely concerning. Now there is obviously a limited amount of data there but talent evaluators traditionally judge players the most in their performance against top tier competition. To see Wilken post a number of that nature has to at least cause some slight pause for teams.
Now, on a positive note, I really like Wilken’s swing because of the quiet nature of it. Often, when a player is as tall as Wilken’s is (6 foot 4), their swing has a tendency to get loopy and they have multiple moving parts in it including a big leg kick. Wilken does not carry any of those concerns though as shown in the video below.
Brock Wilken hits his 31st HR of the year— ESPN (@espn) June 17, 2023
He is now tied with Jac Caglianone for the most HRs in college baseball this season pic.twitter.com/xYJdEVXeJu
Such little movement is going to reduce the odds of prolonged slumps because there is less that can mechanically go wrong. There’s nothing in his hands or leg kick either that indicates he would struggle with velocity either. His hands are really quick and is able to generate fantastic bat speed which helps produce even more power for him.