MLB Draft Profile: Hunter Goodman

MLB Draft Profile: Hunter Goodman

by June 6, 2021 0 comments

The 2021 MLB Draft will begin on July 11, 2021. We take a look at Hunter Goodman, a catcher out of Memphis who has demonstrated impressive pop.

Make sure to check out all of our other MLB Draft Profiles.

Hunter Goodman, Catcher, Memphis

Height: 6’1″
Weight: 210 lbs.
Age: 21
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
2019: 55G, .326/.367/.573, 78 H, 67 RBI, 13 HR
2020: 17G, .357/.416/.743, 25 H, 31 RBI, 8 HR
2021: 56G, .307/.401/.678, 62 H, 51 RBI, 21 HR

Scouting Grades

Hit: 45
Power: 60
Run: 45
Field: 40
Throw: 45

Evidently, power is what puts Goodman on the map. He’s always a threat for a home run with the bat in his hands, and he is willing to go all-out to put a charge into a baseball. Despite his prowess at the plate, Goodman has not dominated behind the plate. Outside of a few bursts of arm strength, he leaves a lot to be desired. This could necessitate a switch to a corner outfield position.

Strengths

In case you couldn’t tell from his stat line, Goodman is full of exciting pop. He has clobbered 21 home runs so far this season, and he hit three grand slams in one week as an underclassman in the Cape Cod League in 2019. He gets really good loft while executing his fast, aggressive swing, and he can really pull the ball high and far. Power is the main selling point for the catcher ahead of the draft.

Running is another area where Goodman possesses at least some value. He’s not lightning-fast and won’t be a frequent base-stealer by any means, but where his speed matters most is a potential switch to the outfield. He doesn’t project as a long-term catcher, so if he moves to the outfield, he will need to have average speed, mobility, and range. Quicker than most catchers, this shouldn’t be much of an issue for Goodman.

Weaknesses

There are several weaknesses with Goodman’s game, starting with his hit tool. His stance and swing have drawn several concerns. For starters, the 21-year-old possesses a very long, lofty swing with a very large leg kick and stride. Toning this down will be very important. His vision should also be considered as he possesses a willingness to swing at a lot of pitches. This has paid off for him in terms of power, but it can also lead to a lot of swings-and-misses, so it’ll need to be refined ahead of pro ball. It’s worth noting that he has drawn 30 walks this year, so there is some evidence of him working on improving his patience at the plate.

Fielding is another legitimate concern when it comes to Goodman. According to MLB Pipeline, Goodman was responsible for seven passed balls over the course of 17 games (0.4 per game) in 2020. His clunky fielding and glovework are just another factor in a potential switch to the outfield.

Finally, Goodman possesses an average arm that just doesn’t have the zip that other catchers boast. Velocity and accuracy have both been concerns for the backstop, and he retired just 15 percent of base-stealers between 2019 and 2020.

Pro Comparison: Kyle Schwarber

It’s not hard to see the glaring similarities between Goodman and Schwarber. The latter, who was drafted by the Chicago Cubs with the fourth overall pick in 2014, primarily served as a catcher in college before taking the majority of his reps in the outfield throughout affiliated ball and the majors. He posted very similar collegiate numbers as Goodman and launched 32 home runs over his last two seasons at Indiana University Bloomington. Goodman won’t be a No. 4 pick like Schwarber, who now plays for the Washington Nationals, but the bottom line is that these two have very similar profiles.

Draft Projection: Mid Second Round

There has been some hype about Goodman going off the board in the first round due to his tremendous power output. However, if a player is drafted in the first round, they have to be well-rounded with a very clear projection. Outside of power, there isn’t anything glaring about his playing style. In fact, if you factor out the power, he’s an average catcher with decent vision at the plate, a swing and stride that won’t hold up in the pros, and enough athleticism that could permit him to shift to left field. The power can’t be ignored, but if you look at the rest of his traits, it’s hard to justify a team using its very first selection on him. In all likelihood, Woodman will be a second-round pick when the draft rolls around in July.

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Main Image Credit: The University of Memphis

Andersen is a teenage sportswriter and reporter whose articles have appeared across the Prime Time Sports Talk, Sports Illustrated Kids, FantasyPros, and SB Nation platforms. He has also received credit from RotoWorld, CBS Sports, ESPN, Bleacher Report, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, The Athletic, SB Nation, NBC Sports, NY Post, and dozens of other sports sites for his reporting work.

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