Indians selected Yordys Valdes with 63rd pick in MLB Draft

The Tribe added a shortstop on Monday night

James Rapien
June 04, 2019 - 1:01 am
Progressive Field prior to home opener

James Rapien - 92.3 The Fan

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CLEVELAND, Ohio – The Indians selected Yordys Valdes with the No. 63 pick in Monday's Major League Baseball Draft. 

Valdes, 17, is a switch-hitting shortstop from Cuba. He posted a .343 batting average with 13 RBI and 20 runs scored in 23 games this season. He recently graduated from McArthur High School in Miami, Florida. He committed to Florida State. 

“He’s an extremely athletic high school shortstop,” said scouting director Scott Barnsby. “This guy has elite defensive instincts. He’s got hands, he’s got actions, he’s got range to both sides, impressive transfer and arm strength to stay at shortstop. We see him being a middle of the diamond player for a long time. He’s got a feel to hit from both sides of the plate.”

Valdes is known for his defense. Baseball America calls him a glove-first player. He rose up draft boards and prospect rankings this season. Some are concerned about his strength, but the Indians are excited about his upside.

Valdes moved to South Florida when he was five years old. He was coached in high school by Oddibe McDowell and his father Oscar, who played outfield for the Cuban national team. McDowell spent seven seasons in the big leagues including 69 games in Cleveland during the 1989 season.