Prospect Talk

Prospect Spotlight: Joe Mack, C Miami Marlins

Welcome to our Prospect Spotlight series at The Dynasty Guru. We’ll be taking an in-depth look at multiple prospects at each position, today digging in deep on Marlins prospect Joe Mack.

Background

A first-round compensatory pick of the Miami Marlins in the 2021 FYPD out of Williamsville East Highschool, but was ranked as the #19 prospect available in the draft by MLB pipeline. Mack has held the attention of scouts for a few years, with no loud tools he does plenty of things well to stand out above his prep peers behind the plate. At 6’1” and 210lbs, Mack has the ideal size for a catcher and is plus athletically for the position.

Hit Tool

Mack begins in an open stance from the left-hand side. He closes the stance quickly and though his hands start high; he lowers them in a swinging motion before he actually decides to swing the bat. This puts his hands in a great position to swing and contributes to his above-average bat speed. The bat comes through the zone early and with a nice loft. His bat-to-ball skills are strong and he has the ability to become an above-average hitter if things go well for him.

Approach

Given his upright stance, Joe Mack presents a large zone to the pitcher but controls the space well. He strikes out at times but is patient and seems to be in control of his at-bats. The results in his pro debut were a 29.3% strikeout rate and a 26.6% walk rate. Maybe he needs to get more aggressive, but it’s encouraging he wasn’t flailing at pitches out of the zone the first time he saw other pro players. With the hit tool he already possesses, and the approach, I’d expect to see positive walk rates and reduced strikeout rates as he progresses through the Marlins system.

Power

When I see Joe’s open stance and level shouldered swing with loft, my eyes light up and expect to see big power. Currently, Mack is only showing doubles power in-game, driving balls into gaps, and had a hard time hitting homers even in high school. But the body and swing lend promise to better days ahead, as he should become strong enough to hit homers without selling out for power, and his swing is conducive to hitting balls hard in the air. I’ll generally put more faith in a player with a good hit tool developing power over a power hitter developing good contact skills. This sort of promise makes Mack intriguing to dynasty owners, as long as you can look past the amount of time it typically takes high school-catching prospects to reach the majors.

Speed

Not a burner, but we’re talking about a catcher here. Perfect Game USA measured Mack’s 60-yard dash at 7.06 which is a 45 on the scouting scale to me. Looking at adding a bit more strength as he continues to mature, Mack might add a couple of stolen bases at the highest level, but not many. The speed might allow him to score a couple of extra runs than the average backstop putting up similar triple slash lines.

Defense

A good receiver behind the plate, with a plus arm. Of course, there’s a long way to go in development, but he seems to have the tools and footwork to stay average at the position.

Summary

Many will shy away from high school catchers, but Mack is only ranked our nineteenth best catching prospect out there. Yes, with the potential to hit for average power and average defense, he could become a major league backup at the position. Look for him to get a bit more time in rookie ball before potentially being promoted to low-A if he’s successful at the former. He could also jump up our rankings if he can prove he can handle both levels.

Scouting Grades

Hit          Raw Power          Game Power       Speed                   Field       FV          

55           50                          45                          45                          50           45

Thank you to Keanan Lamb for making this fantastic video, and congratulations to him for being hired as a scout with the St. Louis Cardinals!

The Author

Ken Balderston

Ken Balderston

20+ years of fantasy baseball experience & currently only playing in dynasty leagues. Christian, proud father of 3, husband to the strongest woman in the world, accountant, golfer, cook.

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