2022 Draft Preview: Logan Tanner (Catcher)

Name: Logan Tanner
School: Mississippi State University
Position: Catcher
Height/Weight: 6’0” 215
B/T: R/R
D.O.B. 11/10/2000

Scouting Report

A defense-first catcher, Tanner has a cannon for an arm. Rated the best catcher arm in the draft by Baseball America, the Mississippi State backstop featured a 96 mph fastball as a high school pitcher. In addition to keeping offenses station-to-station, the 6’0” 215-pounder is a solid receiver who’s capable of keeping errant pitches in front of him. He’s also demonstrated an ability to call a strong game.

On offense, the backstop has the potential to hit 20-25 home runs a year. It’ll take some adjustments to his swing to reach that level. Currently, he hits too many ground balls and doesn’t make enough solid contact. He’s adept at drawing walks with good contact rates. As expected from a catcher, he’s a liability on the base paths.

Keith Law of The Athletic rates his floor as a Reese McGuire (pause for collective groan) type backup. If he can get his swing right, he could transform into a Will Smith type.

Here’s video of Tanner on Defense

Tanner guns down a runner trying to steal second base

Here’s a look at Tanner with a bat in his hand.

Tanner launches one into the seats

Why Would the White Sox Draft Logan Tanner?

If any position group could use an infusion of talent, it’s catcher. Adam Hackenberg is the system’s only Top 30 prospect at the position. Drafted for his defense, Hackenberg has surprised offensively, giving him a legitimate shot to become a major league catcher. Carlos Perez has impressed in Charlotte and may be in Chicago at some point this season. Despite his success, he’s 25-years-old with a ceiling of a backup. 2021 draftee Colby Smelley is off to a decent start in Class-A Kannapolis, and Victor Torres, an 11th rounder in 2019 out of Puerto Rico, continues to struggle with the bat. Adding Tanner would bring another much-needed catching prospect with big league potential into the fold. If the White Sox are unable to land him or choose to take a pass, look for them to take a catcher in the top five rounds.

Mock Drafts

Early mock drafts had Tanner as a mid-to-late first-round pick. More recent versions have him falling into the second round or later. Given the shortage of talent at the position, he’s a strong possibility for the White Sox. Are they willing to commit to him in the first round? Several factors go into that —however, need is not one of them.

The folks at Prospect’s Live projected Tanner to the Milwaukee Brewers with the 72nd overall pick in their latest mock draft. No other publication currently has projected the backstop anywhere in the top 40 picks. Tanner is ranked as the #29 overall player in the class by MLB Pipeline currently. He’s also ranked 69th overall by Baseball America. Keith Law of The Athletic placed him at #37 overall while Kiley McDaniel ranked him 53rd over at ESPN.

College Statistics

2020 (SEC)
14 G, 41 AB, .261/.388/.439, .827 OPS, 6 R, 11 H, 1 2B, 2 HR, 5 RBI 0 SB, 8 BB, 7 K

2021 SEC
67 G, 244 AB, .287/.383/.525, .907 OPS, 45 R, 70 H, 13 2B, 15 HR, 53 RBI, 0 SB, 39 BB, 48 K

2022 SEC
55 G, 207AB, .285/.387/.425, .812 OPS, 36 R, 59 H, 8 2B, 7 HR, 38 RBI, 0 SB,32 BB, 45 K

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Ken Sawilchik
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