by J.T. Toth
Photo courtesy of TCU Athletics.
The Pittsburgh Pirates own the #1 pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, which is scheduled for July 9th-July 11th in Seattle, WA. This draft could be the final piece of GM Ben Cherington’s puzzle to catapult the Bucs into a yearly contender.
In the next few weeks, Draft 412 will showcase the top prospects coming out in 2023.
Name- Brayden Taylor
Pos-C B-L T-R
HT/WT- 6’1” 180 lbs.
Home – West Jordan, UT
Brayden Taylor lettered four years at Copper Hills High School and was ranked 188th in the nation by Perfect Game heading into his senior year. Due to Covid, he played 3 games his senior season, and was not selected in the MLB Draft. After going unselected, he enrolled at TCU.
Taylor played in and started 58 games during his freshman season and led the Horned Frogs in hits (72). He was second on the team in batting average (at .324) with 12 home runs and 53 RBI’s. With his stellar season, he was named a Freshman All-American by numerous outlets.
Taylor did not make the big leap in his sophomore year that many thought he would. He still hit .314 with 13 home runs and 50 RBI’s. He walked more than he struck out for the second straight season without losing his power numbers and still entered his junior season as a possible first round draft candidate.
For his junior year, he added power but sacrificed batting average to do it (dropping to .308) and struck out more than he walked (60-54). But Taylor set a TCU record for homeruns in a season with 23 and knocked in 70 runs.
As a prospect, he has a sweet left-handed swing and is able to make consistent, solid contact to all fields. He has an average eye at the plate and for the most part, does not chase pitches. In his collegiate career, Taylor has amassed 158 walks in 184 games.
He plays a solid third base and has a strong arm to man the hot corner. He’s a good base runner but has below average speed, yet he will not run himself into bad outs. Taylor has a good baseball IQ and understands his limitations.
Taylor is projected as a 15-20 home run type player in the pros that will hit for average. He’s average in just about every category, with no plus ratings which makes him steady, but not spectacular.
Draft 412 spent some time watching videos on Brayden Taylor and was reminded of another former TCU alumni that hit left handed and played third base—Matt Carpenter. Carpenter was a 15th round pick and he is 3” taller than Taylor, but their swing and scouting reports are eerily similar.
Brayden Taylor is a player who should slide in right at the end of the first round, or early second and become a nice prospect in somebody’s organization. The big question is, how much power will he bring to the professional level?
Round 1/2 #22 on Draft 412’s big board.