There was a nice little article yesterday on jsonline about Zelous Wheeler as Tom Haudricourt and company try to introduce you to the prospects that where invited to spring training. Surprisingly, Wheeler never made Baseball America’s top 30 prospects in the organization but being he is at the big league spring training the Brewers must think he has some talent.
The stocky 23 year old has been consistent throughout his minor league career putting up a slash line of .271/.369/.399 in his 4 years of minor league ball. Last year Wheeler finished in the top 3 on the team in Average, HR’s, RBI’s and OBP at AA Huntsville which should tell you how important he was to that them. He also was playing SS which was a position he was not familiar with as he was drafted as a third baseman back in 2007 .
One of the reasons Wheeler was moved to SS was he has surprising quickness and athleticism. Whether or not he stays at SS has yet to be determined as he had a bit of a rough time adjusting to the position as he racked up 32 errors in 93 games for the Stars. Nothing is to flashy about his bat, but nothing is all that negative either. Wheeler has good gap power which leads to the occasional HR. He makes good contact and shows solid plate discipline.
A guy that can play three infield postions and has some pop should make a big league roster one day. Wheeler may not make any all-star teams but could be a Bill Hall type player that is able to fill in at multiple positions and hit a few bombs from time to time. I am going to go out on a limb here and make a prediction, I think Wheeler will have a longer big league career then 75% of the prospects that made the top 30 from Baseball America. If my prediction comes true that wouldn’t be a half bad career for a 19th round draft pick.