This offseason, the Mariners are consciously trying to curb the strikeouts and build a roster full of players who "Dominate the zone" at the major league level. Look further down on the farm; you'll see plenty of prospects practicing what the Mariners preach. Our top-ranked prospect, Cole Young, is the embodiment of the philosophy.
The Mariners selected the Pittsburgh teen 21st overall in the 2022 Major League Draft due to his elite hit tool (60 grade). Scout labeled Young as the best pure-hitting prep in his class, and he quickly flashed those skills in a 10-game stint with the Modesto Nuts (.385/.422/.539).
Young isn't just a one-trick pony; he routinely flashed an above-average glove, speed, and arm, which all grade at 55 on the scouting scale. The only tool lagging is the power, and the Mariners believe that attribute is projectable (10-15 homers). If we are playing the comparison game, he's Adam Frazier with a bit more speed. That might hit most Mariner fans where it hurts, but remember that Frazier is a perennial 2-WAR player.
Young teamed with our #2 prospect, Harry Ford, to form a dynamic top-of-the-lineup for the Aquasox this season. He ran spectacular walk (14.8) and strikeout rates (16.5), resulting in a team-leading 142 wRC+ this season.
The 20-year-old infielder bounced between shortstop and second base, flashing a smooth glove and above-average arm. Young will likely settle in at second base when he gets to T-Mobile Park. Look for the Mariners to promote the slick-fielding infielder to Arkansas in 2024.