The 2021 MLB Draft got off to a roaring start. The Milwaukee Brewers continued a trend of college bats.
After going with a left-handed hitting college outfielder in the first round with Sal Frelick, the Brewers added a left-handed hitting college infielder.
With the 33rd overall pick in the 2021 MLB Draft, the Milwaukee Brewers selected Tyler Black, 2B/3B, Wright State
Standing at 6’2″ and 220 pounds, Tyler Black brings a great hit tool and a great swing from the left side of the plate. His power is solid, although not a plus tool, and he could end up hitting around 15-20 HRs a year.
For Wright State this year, Black hit .383/.496/.683 with 13 home runs, 39 walks, and just 25 strikeouts. He stole 11 bases and was caught just once.
Black was MLB Pipeline’s 57th overall prospect, but this isn’t necessarily a reach. This is a pretty weak overall class for college bats, but the Brewers grabbed two of the better ones early on with Frelick and Black both having 60 grades on their hit tools.
Defensively, Black does have experience at third base, but he underwent surgery on his throwing shoulder last year, so he may not have the arm strength to play there going forward. He played second base this year after coming back from that, but perhaps the further removed he gets from surgery his arm will improve.
Once again, the Brewers drafted a quality athlete that played multiple sports in high school and that has a big hit tool. They have a type, it appears.
They also continue with the philosophy of “Draft the bat and figure out the rest later”. Second base, although up the middle, isn’t seen as quite as valuable a position as shortstop, but the Brewers have been willing to draft second basemen with big hit tools early on, with Keston Hiura being a prime example.
It’s far more difficult to develop a quality hit tool than it is to develop a curveball or a slider. Although the Brewers will need to add some pitching at some point, they love college bats and there aren’t many good ones in this Draft. So they get some they like early on and can add the pitching later.
Corbin Burnes was a 4th rounder, Brandon Woodruff was an 11th rounder, Jacob deGrom was a 9th round pick, Shane Bieber was a 4th round pick. Brewers prospect Aaron Ashby was also a 4th round pick.
The Brewers grab some big hit tools and players that walk more than they strikeout generally with Frelick and Black on the first night of the Draft.
Milwaukee will be on the clock again with the 51st overall pick on Monday.