Ellis and Brendan McKay were teammates at the University of Louisville before hearing their names called on Day 1 of the 2017 Draft. While McKay's two-way potential led to him being selected by the Rays with the No. 4 pick, Ellis, who had led the club in average, home runs and RBIs during the spring, remained on the board until the second round. The D-backs sent Ellis straight to the California League for his first full season, hoping that his advanced bat might not make him long for the level. It looked like that might be the case when Ellis got off to a strong start in the first half, but he tailed off the rest of the way, slashing .213/.306/.377 over his final 50 contests.
A physically strong right-handed hitter, Ellis has easy raw power to all fields and has shown some feel to hit from a solid approach. That he doesn't always utilize his lower-half led to too many inconsistent swings and weakly-hit fly balls in 2018, but the D-backs believe his swing is in better shape now after he addressed those inefficiencies. Ellis manages his strikeouts and draws his share of walks, though he does have a tendency to press and get away from his approach, especially as his struggles deepen.
Concerns about Ellis' defense out of the Draft had some thinking he'd eventually move to first. Instead, he's improved the most in that area as a pro, so much so that he's now regarded as an above-average defender at the hot corner, where his plus arm strength is a fit. But while the defense and raw power give him a chance to succeed there, Ellis will need to make significant gains as a hitter to realize his potential as a regular.
3B Drew Ellis assigned to Jackson Generals from Visalia Rawhide.
3B Drew Ellis assigned to Arizona Diamondbacks.
3B Drew Ellis assigned to Visalia Rawhide from Hillsboro Hops.
3B Drew Ellis roster status changed by Arizona Diamondbacks.