The hype surrounding Brewers outfield prospect Garrett Mitchell is real.
It started as soon as he was drafted 20th overall by the Brewers in the 2020 MLB Draft, and the excitement has only grown in the months since. Many scouts and draft experts had Mitchell as a Top 10 prospect in that draft, so the general sense was that the Brewers got a steal by snagging him so late in the first round.
Things certainly look that way.
After not being able to play in a 2020 minor league season, and missing most of Instructional League with a minor injury, we’re finally getting our first real look at Garrett Mitchell. Brewers fans, coaches, and executives alike are all loving what they’re seeing.
In the Cactus League so far, Mitchell is 10-for-22, with a home run and three stolen bases. Six of his hits have come off lefty pitchers, which is incredible for a young left handed hitter. Nearly everything has been hit hard, even his outs, and he’s been quite impressive.
Since he’s doing so well, many are looking forward to Mitchell’s eventual MLB debut, hoping for it to be sooner rather than later.
When could Garrett Mitchell make his MLB debut for the Brewers?
It won’t happen in 2021. Get that idea out of your head, it’ll only lead to disappointment and misplaced anger at the front office. Garrett Mitchell will not make his big league debut in 2021.
2022, however, is a possibility.
He’s extremely unlikely to make the Opening Day roster in 2022, but could become an option later in the year if injuries pop up.
Everything really depends on how Mitchell performs in the minor leagues. If he keeps hitting like this and his power shows up early on, then Mitchell will be on the hyper-fast track to the big leagues.
Remember, the key to Mitchell’s offensive development is tapping into his immense raw power.
We’ve seen one home run this spring, and the Brewers have seen plenty in batting practice, but they need to get it to show up in games. Mitchell has 30 home run a year raw power, but his current approach doesn’t maximize that ability. How soon he makes his debut is dependent on how soon he starts to maximize his power ability.
If the power immediately shows up in 2021 and his hit tool doesn’t suffer at all, then he can shoot up through the system quickly and put himself in a position to earn a call up in 2022 if an opening for everyday ABs comes up.
Otherwise, early 2023 is the best bet. The Brewers outfield is slated to have a number of openings after the 2022 season ends. Lorenzo Cain‘s contract is up after next season, Avisail Garcia would be done after 2022 if his contract option is picked up, while Jackie Bradley Jr. has a mutual option for 2023.
All three of those players could be gone before 2023 Opening Day, which would leave Christian Yelich as the only outfielder under contract for that season at the moment. That leaves an everyday job for Mitchell to take.
If everything goes well right away for Mitchell, he could force his way to a big league call up in mid-to-late 2022, but the most likely time for his debut is early in 2023 as the Brewers outfield turns over to a new era.
There’s understandably a lot of excitement and hype around Mitchell. He’ll be in Milwaukee soon, but not as soon as this year.