Mariners select Ohio HS infielder Colt Emerson with 22nd pick

Jul 9, 2023, 6:13 PM | Updated: 9:42 pm

Seattlle Mariners draft Colt Emerson...

The Seattle Mariners select Ohio high-school infielder Colt Emerson 22nd overall in the 2023 MLB Draft. (Taylor Jacobs/Seattle Sports)

(Taylor Jacobs/Seattle Sports)

For the third year in a row, the Seattle Mariners have selected a high-school hitter with their first-round pick in the MLB Draft. In 2023, that man is infielder Colt Emerson, who hails from Glenn High School in Ohio.

Seattle Mariners 2023 MLB Draft Tracker: Every M’s pick

Emerson, an Auburn commit who swings from the left side of the plate, is 6 foot 1 and 195 pounds. He was MLB Pipeline’s No. 29 overall prospect in this year’s draft class.

Emerson was one of the most common names tied to the Mariners in various mock drafts ahead of the event at Seattle’s Lumen Field on Sunday night, and it’s easy to see why.

The young infielder has a big hit tool that Pipeline grades as 60, or plus. He earns 50 (average) grades for his power, speed and glove, and a 55 grade for his arm. Like 2022 M’s first-round pick Cole Young, Emerson has a really pretty left-handed swing.

Pipeline reports he drives the ball gap to gap, but he does have the ability to pull the ball with authority. He has the hands and bat speed to be a 20-homer threat once he starts to consistently pull the ball.

Emerson has played shortstop most of his life and can probably start his pro career there, but his likely long-term defensive home is at third base, where his above-average arm would play well.

Seattle Mariners draft HS bats again with OF Farmelo, SS Peete at 29 and 30

What makes Emerson interesting, too, is he’s one of the younger prospects in this draft. He’s just 17 and doesn’t turn 18 until July 20.

Per the Mariners, Emerson batted .455 with 26 doubles, eight triples, 13 home runs, and 51 RBI with a .587 on-base percentage and a .928 slugging percentage (1.515 OPS). He also struck out just 14 times in his high school career while drawing 43 walks in 54 games.

“Colt is a left-handed hitting high school shortstop from Ohio,” Mariners director of amateur scouting Scott Hunter said in a press release. “He is a pure hitter who already possesses an advanced knowledge of the strike zone. As a member of Team USA last summer, he was an important part of the lineup that won the Gold Medal. We see Colt as an advanced hitter who will not only hit for average but power in the future. Colt’s leadership and polished approach to the game makes us extremely excited to add him to our organization.”

The 22nd pick has a slot value of $3,496,600.

Mariners ‘aggressive,’ target ‘big upside’ to open 2023 MLB Draft 

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