1. Logan Tanner, Mississippi State
If the Yankees do draft for need … there’s no need greater than behind the plate, and it’s much easier to project a catcher moving forward (in both tangibles and intangibles) than it is to figure out what a pitcher will eventually become.
Logan Tanner, projected by Baseball America to head to the Red Sox (eesh) and slotted 19th overall by MLB Pipeline, is exactly the kind of high-upside and high floor catcher the Yankees could prioritize at 25. He’d be both an appropriate value and a need-filler, as long as everything goes right in his developmental path.
In 2021, Tanner led the Mississippi State Bulldogs with 15 homers and led them to a College World Series title, neatly completing his full resume in just a single season. Projected for 55 power (on an 80-max scouting scale) and equipped with a rocket 70 arm (he was once a two-way prospect and logged some mound time), the slugging catcher already has both championship experience and counting numbers on his ledger — not to mention guiding Miss State’s extremely talented 2021 pitching staff, led by 2021 Giants first-rounder Will Bednar and closer-turned-first-round-starter prospect Landon Sims.
Tanner has started off 2022 hitting .280 with a bomb in seven games, and thanks to the pedigree of the team he’s leading, Yankee fans will have ample opportunity to watch him this season as compared with similar prospects.
If you’re dreaming of a 6-0, 215-pound force behind home plate, Tanner might be your ideal (and attainable) selection — as long as the Sox don’t swipe him one pick early.
Hey, come to think of it … why exactly do the Sox pick ahead of the Yankees when they won the tiebreaker and hosted the Wild Card Game?!