MLB Draft: 2016 Top High School Catchers and First Baseman

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MLB Draft
Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /

Cooper Johnson is an advanced defensive catcher, especially for a high school player. Johnson is from Carmel Catholic High School in Illinois and is 6’0” and 200 pounds. He has the size to remain a catcher as he is not too big or too scrawny. He will definitely remain behind the plate in pro ball, but the only concern will be his bat on whether or not he becomes a star.

Johnson, a Mississippi commit, stands square to the plate with his knees slightly bent. His hands twirl about head high as a timing mechanism, and he brings his hands through the zone. He won’t hit for much power, maybe five to ten a year, and his average may only sit around the .250 range. But his game isn’t about his right handed stroke, it’s how he is able to receive the ball and throw runners out. According to, Johnson has a pop time of 1.81 seconds, putting him in the top 97.23 percent tile, and when that is combined with his 84 mph throws (, Johnson has one of the best arms among high school catchers, and arguably in al catchers in this draft.

Johnson looks like he could be a Jose Molina catcher, or even a young Yadier Molina. His bat will leave some to be desired, but due to his strong ability behind the dish and his arm, he should at the worst become a backup in the Major Leagues. He looks like a second round or Lottery B round pick.

Next: A potential third round pick from George County High School