Tony Renda – 2B
2012 MLB Draft Prospect – University of California
Rated: #91 2012 MLB Draft Prospect – Baseball America
DOB: 01/24/1991 Ht: 5-8 Wt: 173
— 2011 Pac-10 Player of the Year —
Seen in person 1 time
Univ. California vs. University of the Pacific – 2-18-2012
Box Score: 3-5 – 3 Singles, 1/2 Stolen Bases
Tony Renda isn’t the biggest guy in the world. Despite that fact, he looks like a natural baseball player. While that may seem like a trivial point, so many players I see either look funny in a uniform, clunky on defense, or awkward at the plate. Renda can clearly control the bat and he displayed it in the rounds of batting practice he took before the game. Like a technician he would pound 2 balls to right field, then 2 to center field, before finally jumping on a couple and pulling them to left. Almost all the balls he hit in batting practice were square on. Other players on the Cal team, one of the top 20-30 teams in the country, would weakly hit balls, which made the sessions Renda took in the cage look more impressive. He doesn’t have huge power at all. More of a line drive type hitter who can move a little bit on the bases. He probably has slightly above average speed. He stole one base during the game but also got thrown out trying to steal in the game as well.
His defense at 2B is probably slightly above average – average. He only had a few plays during the game, and he made those with ease. Maybe there was a slight bobble on one ground ball – but it was really slight. The key for him is he has to stick at 2B to reach the major leagues. He would be playing SS if he was an elite defender, so the fact he is at 2B tells me he probably doesn’t have the range or arm to play SS. He doesn’t have enough power to stick at 1B, 3B or a corner outfield spot, so his best position is 2B where he can be an average/above average defender with a good bat.
There will be other players in the 2012 MLB Draft who have more ‘upside’. Renda is a smaller player who’s upside might be a very good #2 hitter. His downside is he never hits enough to reach the MLB and/or has to move off 2B. A team picking him in the 2nd or 3rd round of the draft seems to fit. He hit .332 in 2011 in route to winning the Pac-10 Player of the Year as a sophomore. He should once again easily hit over .300 for the Golden Bears in 2012, where he bats lead-off for the team. Renda attended Serra High School in California – where Barry Bonds, Tom Brady and Greg Jefferies among other famous athletes have played. Renda broke the all-time hits record at Serra which was held by Jefferies.
Card collectors can expect to see cards of Renda if he is drafted in the first 5 rounds of the 2012 MLB Baseball draft. Bowman Chrome Draft, Draft products by Leaf and possibly Panini Elite could be sets you see the very first Renda cards. Expect to see those cards toward the tail end of 2012. Renda could also make his minor league debut shortly after being drafted in 2012.