Kevin Made – Picture by Larry Kave/Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Kevin Made is very popular amongst my fellow North Side Bound writers. I am a little slow on the uptake or, as some may say, a little late to the party. I do have him in my new prospect list and I do appreciate all that he is bringing to the table this year in Myrtle Beach. Each at-bat is quite the adventure. I am really looking forward to seeing how he improves over the course of the next two months as he could be a top 10 prospect for me on the next prospect list I do in November after the Arizona Fall League season ends.
Height – 5-foot-10
Weight – 160
Age – 19
Bats – Right
Throws – Right
From – Bani, Dominican Republic
Signed as an international free agent July 2, 2019
When Kevin Made was signed as an international free agent in 2019, there was not a lot of fanfare. Most of that went to catcher Ronnier Quintero. But when the 2021 season began, Made was assigned to Myrtle Beach but was injured and did not begin his career until his debut later in May.
Over the next three months, Made appeared in 58 games and he hit .272. But what caught everybody’s attention was just how good of a defender he is. In addition to range, he’s got an electric arm And he sort of pushed Ed Howard off the position over to second went. Made started a total of 41 games at short and 13 at third base.
There were some concerns about his approach as he did not walk a lot. He was pretty much a free swinger tending to pull the ball a lot more than he did using the other two fields. In fact, his pull percentage was 45%, to center was 26%, and to the right 28%.
Heading into 2022, the issue that was being talked about was whether Made would stay at short or would Howard move back to the position. Unfortunately, injuries made that point moot as Howard had a great offseason and spring training and was assigned to South Bend.
Just like 2021, Made would not appear this year until April 17 where he played just one game and then missed two more weeks when he came back on May 3 to stay.
Made made the All-Star team for May hitting .301 with two home runs and 10 RBI. He also showed that he improved his approach quite a bit walking seven times in the month.
In June, the batting average plummeted but the home runs increased to four and he drove in 12. Then again, his walk percentage skyrocketed as he took 16 free passes and only struck out 19 times compared to 23 the month before.
So that’s where we’re at entering July.
The results are a bit uneven, but we’re seeing signs of progress in Made’s development at the plate. The power is up, the walk rate is up, the strike rate is down, And the batting average looks to be uneven from month-to-month. The pull percentages are almost exactly the same as 2021 at 45, 28, and 26.
Here’s the big thing for me: he’s just 19.
He debuted in Low-A skipping the DSL entirely. He did not play in any rookie league and he is also learning from Buddy Bailey and Steven Pollakov. He will be fine in time. It may not be as fast as you or I want, but he’s getting there.
He’s going to be in South Bend next year playing shortstop. But his approach is going to have to continue to improve for him to have success there. He’s on his way and the improvements are encouraging to see. I hope to see him at end of this year in South Bend.