CLEVELAND, Ohio – Six years ago, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected shortstop Cole Tucker with the number 24 pick in the Major League Baseball First Year’s Draft at Mountain Pointe High, near Phoenix. On Wednesday, the Cleveland Indians took Carson, Cole’s youngest brother, a place earlier than his big brother with pick # 23.
Cole Tucker reached the big leagues with the Bucs in 2019, posting an OPS of 0.626 with a pair of home runs and 13 RBI in 56 games. This motivated Carson to improve his skills before his final year – a year that was eventually interrupted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I used it to my advantage,” Tucker told the Baseball Prospect Journal in January. “It motivates me more. Of course, I want to be better than (Cole). I want to do everything better than him. It started when we were younger with stupid little games in the house. I just want to be better and compete at her level. He has arrived at the professional ball and the majors, and I want to be this guy and the best I can be. ”
Tucker reduced by .390 / .455 / .574 with 68 RBIs, 20 doubles, 9 triples and 5 home runs in 92 games for Mountain Pointe by MaxPreps. The 6 foot 2 inch 180 pound shortstop was named the 2020 Rawlings Perfect Game All American’s preseason. He managed to hit .364 (4-for-11) with a double, 2 homers and 5 points produced in three games before his 2020 senior season was canceled.
Tucker strikes on the right side of the plate with a vertical position. He has a short, compact swing and is constantly climbing the heights according to Dan Zielinski, analyst at the Milwaukee area.
Cole Tucker went to the MLB Network to break down his brother’s game in a draft video, saying that the younger brother has completely transformed his body in the past year.
“When we hit together, he climbs into the cage with me and my friends in the big league and kind of shows us,” said Cole Tucker. “He has very good gun control and can hit the ball very far, can hit it for a mile. I think the sky is the limit for Carson Tucker. ”
Defensively, Tucker could have the chops to stick to shortstop, despite Cleveland’s wealth of talented middle infielders in his farming system. He has agility, arm strength and a quick release from Zielinski.
“I feel like I have the skills to be a shortstop in the league every day in the future,” Tucker told the Baseball Prospect Journal after his junior season.
Indian amateur scouting director Scott Barnsby said Tucker’s family familiarity with following the scouting process with Cole in 2014 played a role in the club selecting Carson. He credited scouts Ryan Perry and John Heuerman for developing a relationship with Carson and building it from scratch.
“Right now, we felt very comfortable with Carson on and off the field, so it was really important to us,” said Barnsby.
Tucker will not be completely familiar with Progressive Field, as he played there last summer in the MLB High School All-Star Game in July. He also appeared on the storefront circuit at the Area Code Games, the Perfect Game National Showcase and was invited to the prestigious three-week PDP League event hosted by MLB and USA Baseball at IMG Academy in Florida.
Neither will he fully understand the great current and former leagues of the Cleveland Indians. In a video posted to Trevor Bauer’s Momentum media platform, Cole and Carson Tucker participated in live bats against Bauer and current tribe throwers Logan Allen and Cam Hill.
Towards the end of the video, which took place in the Arizona desert, Carson Tucker strikes a deep left blow against Allen and walks away from the batter’s box with arms raised.
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