The Colorado Rockies received a gift in Ryan McMahon in the second round of the 2013 draft.
The third baseman flashes nearly every tool in the book at 19 years old. He's more than holding his own in the South Atlantic League with a league-leading nine home runs despite being nearly three years younger than average.
McMahon gets it. He has a strong competitive desire and the makeup to succeed. It helps that he was a quarterback for powerhouse Mater Dei High School in California.
McMahon's swing is geared for power. His load is clean and simple, and his hands are in a good position for a swing that generates lift and backspin. He uses his lower half pretty well, and his feet are in good position as he fires his body forward.
McMahon has a plus-potential hit tool. He squares the ball often and shows good barrel awareness. I hesitate to give him a plus hit tool right now because he's prone to sequencing, and his approach is geared for fastballs at times. But he has the ability to barrel balls at a great rate right now.
McMahon has plus power right now, with the potential for more from a projectable body that should add more muscle. He took a left-handed pitcher the opposite way for a home run to left-center at Lake Olmstead. If that doesn't spell plus power, then I don't know what does. The lift in his swing generates backspin that produces hard line drives all over the field, similar to what Jason Heyward is capable of doing. The plus-potential hit tool helps the power to play in-game, as well.
McMahon has an average arm that plays at third base. His arm motion is clean and quick enough. His glove is above-average and will probably remain in that area. He has pretty soft hands that play well at third. I initially wrote McMahon has solid range, but after looking back at his attempts at third in the Asheville series, I think his range is average. He shows good enough lateral movement, but his feet don't have first-step quickness, and his body can get a little stiff. Overall, he probably has an average defensive profile that should stick at third.
His speed is his only drawback, but it won't hinder his offensive value. He's going to hit and have enough power to overcome anything lost by a below-average run tool.
He probably won't be a .300 hitter in the upper levels, because he has an aggressive approach geared for the extra-base hit, and he will have some strikeouts. But McMahon shows the ability to take some pitches and draw some walks, and the value generated by his power will make up for anything lost by a potentially-pedestrian batting average.
I will stick by my assessment that McMahon has all-star potential. He has an overall 7 ceiling with the realistic label of a first-division player (6). I realize this might be aggressive because he doesn't show all five tools, but I'm a firm believer in the hit and power tools. This could be a 30-homer guy with the makeup to lead a clubhouse.
Sunday's gamer on McMahon's grand slam against the GreenJackets.