United States – Catcher Henry Davis
Baseball was born in the United States. While it may no longer be as popular as it once was, it’s still a beloved sport in the country’s culture. It was a pretty close decision for Henry Davis, who was born in New York, and second baseman Nick Gonzales, who hails from Arizona. However, most publications rank Davis over Gonzales, and we had Gonzales at no. 3 and Davis at no. 2 in our pre-season rankings.
Davis was first overall in the 2021 amateur draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. The backstop prospect bulldozed college pitching. He hit .337/.435/.565 with a .439 wOBA during his time at Louisville. This also came with 21 home runs and a 52:46 BB:K ratio. Once Davis reached the professional level, he had eight hits in his first 31 plate appearances. Three of his hits were homers, with two doubles and a triple. Plus, he had four walks.
Davis’s power potential is through the roof. He has 70-projected grades for both his game power and raw power. He also has an above-average hit tool per MLB Pipeline and average projected tool per FanGraphs. Davis has a powerful arm, one that would-be base stealers have to think twice about when running on. MLB Pipeline also praised his footwork behind the dish.
His biggest issue is his overall defensive prowess. He has struggled to catch higher-end stuff and has issues with framing, blocking, and overall reaction. Though framing might not be an issue given the increasing use of automated and digital strike zones throughout pro baseball. Still, the blocking and reaction issues need to be resolved.
Davis has improved his defensive ability, though he still rests well into the below-average territory. At worst, he splits his time at catcher and designated hitter. Davis’s prodigious power potential could give him 40 homers a year with a .280 average. He will also get on base at a healthy rate with plus plate discipline.