The Washington Nationals selected Florida prep outfielder Elijah Green with the fifth pick in Major League Baseball’s 2022 amateur draft on Sunday night. Green was the second outfielder taken, following Drew Jones, who went No. 2 overalls to the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Green was ranked as the No. 5 prospect in the class in June by CBS Sports. Here’s what we wrote at the time:
Green is a fascinating and polarizing prospect, a walking example of bimodal distribution who seems to inspire forecasts invoking only his left- and right-tail outcomes. To hear most scouts tell it, he’s either going to make several All-Star Games, or he’s going to wash out before becoming arbitration eligible. His boosters point to his near-elite power and speed combination, as well as his potential to play center field despite being listed at 6-foot-3 and 225 pounds. (This is where we note, to little surprise, that his father Eric played in the NFL.) Conversely, Green’s critics say that his game needs a lot of refinement for him to max out his tools, and that his extreme swing-and- miss tendencies will cause him to deviate, from being a red-hot chili pepper to not, more frequently than John Frusciante. He’s going to be selected early because perceived ceilings as high as his don’t come around often; then again, perceived floors as low as his don’t, either.
Green attended IMG Academy, which has produced a number of big-league players, including Paolo Espino and Chris Pérez.