Monday, August 30, 2021
Well… it didn’t take long for one of the Braves recent draft picks to put himself on the map as a pro. On Monday, MiLB.com announced its weekly awards for Batter and Pitcher of the Week, and this time fifth-rounder Luke Waddell took home the accolade.
Waddell’s performance with High-A Rome last week (six games) — highlighted by two-homer finishes on each of Tuesday and Friday — included a 12 for 22 (.545 AVG) stretch at the plate to go with six home runs and six RBI (good for a ridiculous 365 wRC+).
All of that production this past week really catapulted Waddell out of what was a rather slow start as a professional. After beginning his pro career by hitting .190 over his first 13 games, the former Georgia Tech star is now hitting a strong .313 for the season and is already up to seven XBH (six HR) in his first 19 games overall.
I wrote about Waddell this past Sunday, following his latest two-homer performance for the R-Braves, but it’s nice to see him getting the national recognition he deserves.
Waddell will most likely finish 2021 with Rome, but if he continues to rake at the High-A level over these last few weeks it’s likely he’ll receive a Double-A assignment at some point next season, possibly taking the place of current M-Braves shortstop, Braden Shewmake. Either way, congratulations to kid as he appears to be the real deal.