Ht: 5'10" Wt: 180 B-T: S-R
Acquired: Drafted 3rd Round in 2013 from Coastal Carolina
FutureSox Prospect Rankings
- #21 - 2013 Midseason
- #14 - 2014 Preseason
- #15 - 2014 Midseason
- #14 - 2015 Preseason
- #11 - 2015 Midseason
- #7 - 2016 Preseason
- #16 - 2016 Midseason
- Interview 8/23/13
- VIDEO: Base Hit 8/23/13
- VIDEO: Full At Bat 3/25/15
- VIDEO: Game at bats, 8/15-17/15
- Video Interview from SoxFest, January 2016
- All FutureSox articles tagged Jacob May
- FutureSox Hitter of the Month - August/September 2013
- FutureSox Hitter of the Month - June 2014
- 2015 Southern League All Star
- Played for Team USA in Premier 12 International Tournament, fall of 2015
Jacob May is another good athlete with great speed to join the ranks of outfield prospects in the organization, and he's the nephew of former White Sox outfielder Carlos May. The younger May was taken as a 3rd round pick from Coastal Carolina in 2013, and signed for slightly under slot. This speedy outfielder hit the Pioneer League hard in a brief draft-year look (.926 OPS in 12 games) and was shipped to Class A Kannapolis where he posted a nice .286/.346/.461 line with 19 steals and a surprising 8 HR in 54 games. 2014 saw May in Winston-Salem, where his hitting numbers came down to earth a bit (.258/.326/.395), but he also stole 37 bases in 45 attempts and made consistent contact. 2015 with AA Birmingham was quite an adventure, as he opened on a tear (.311 AVG, 25 SB in 52 games) before a scary collision with Tim Anderson resulted in a concussion and six weeks off. His numbers upon return from late July on were far less robust, but some rust and adjustment should be expected. In 2016, May was assigned to AAA despite losing that half season in the previous year, and he only got in 83 games there due to some minor injuries. He posted a .266/.309/.352 line there, similar to his career averages in full season ball. But his walk rate dropped off to just 4.7%, and his 22.8% strikeout rate was a career high. 2017 saw May leave camp with the big club, but after struggling to a .056/.150/.056 line in 15 games he was sent back to Charlotte and finished the season there with a mediocre .632 OPS.
May's biggest tool is plus speed, which he uses on the base paths and to provide range as a true center fielder. His glove plays well and he has improving instincts, though his arm is fringy. At the plate, May has generally shown a natural feel to hit and is mostly a gap-to-gap bat. He had drawn walks at a decent clip until 2016 but that seems to have dropped away, and he's very streaky on the offensive side of the game. Despite the power surge in his draft year, he's not likely to hit many out of the park going forward. Unlike others among the "toolsy outfielder" crew in the Sox system, May's ability to make consistent contact might give him a higher floor (but a lower ceiling to go with it). How often he gets on base, and to a lesser extent how his arm plays in the outfield, will dictate his future success. He is 26 years old now and was outrighted off the 40-man roster, so he'll have to fight his way back into a role with the White Sox in 2018.
Major League Outlook: Speed/defense first, 4th outfielder
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