The Miami Marlins have a world of possibility at their fingertips for the 2020 MLB Amateur Entry Draft.
Choosing third overall thanks to a 57-105 campaign in 2019, I believe there’s a consensus as to who the first four picks will be. The only question is what order they’ll go in. Namely, first baseman Spencer Torkelson, left-handed pitcher Asa Lacy, outfielder Austin Martin, and right-handed pitcher Emerson Hancock could all be a reasonable choice to go numbers one through four.
First Round, Number Three Overall
For symmetry’s sake, and because I think it’s how it’s likely going to shake out, the Miami Marlins will choose a Vanderbilt product with their first pick for the second year in a row. After taking outfielder J.J. Bleday in 2019, they’ll happily take Austin Martin in 2020. I think this will be possible because it’s likely the Baltimore Orioles will pick Arizona State product Torkelson first overall, and Lacy should go second to the Detroit Tigers.
Although listed as a shortstop, the six-foot, 170 lb. Martin can also play second, third, or center field as needed. Kind of like Jonathan Villar, but less speed and more hit. In his third year at Vandy, Martin was well on his way to another eye-popping stat line when the season was unceremoniously cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.
In 118 contests overall, Martin has cobbled together a .376/.479/.521 slashline. Since the start of the 2019 season, it’s been an even more impressive .404/.504/.626 with 11 homers, 53 RBI, and 21 stolen bases in 27 attempts over 75 games. The cherry on top? Martin’s plate discipline saw him draw 48 bases on balls during the same timeframe, while striking out only 33 times.
As a top Marlins selection, Martin would join a fratenity that has seen six graduate to the 10+ WAR club, led by Adrian Gonzalez (2000, 43.6), Josh Beckett (1999, 35.7), and Christian Yelich (2010, 31.8).
Martin would be arriving in the majors sometime around 2022. He and Bleday could hit three-four in the batting order for years to come for the Miami Marlins.