Termarr Johnson impressing, turning heads thus far in Grapefruit League play

Feb 20, 2024; Bradenton, FL, USA;  Pittsburgh Pirates infielder Termarr Johnson (81) poses for a
Feb 20, 2024; Bradenton, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates infielder Termarr Johnson (81) poses for a / Kim Klement Neitzel-USA TODAY Sports

Few players have impressed more in Pirate camp this spring than the organization's top hitting prospect Termarr Johnson

When the Pirates invited their non-roster invitees to Major League Spring Training, few names were more intriguing than Termarr Johnson. Coming off a strong 2023 season with Low-A Bradenton and High-A Greensboro, Johnson had the attention of Pirate brass and fans alike ahead of the start of camp.

After being selected no. 4 overall by the Pirates in the 2022 MLB Draft, Johnson has quickly climbed prospect rankings. Before the start of Spring Training, MLB Pipeline named Johnson the best second base prospect in all of baseball.

It's a small sample size, but, thus far, Johnson has looked every bit the part of the best second base prospect in baseball in Grapefruit League play.

In Saturday afternoon's Pirate victory, Johnson had a base hit in his lone at-bat. This hit came off a left-handed pitcher, already giving the 19-year-old lefty 3 hits off of left-handed pitching in Grapefruit League play.

Overall, Johnson has gone 6-for-12 thus far in Grapefruit League play. Johnson has hit a pair of home runs, drawn a walk, hit a double, and struck out 3 times. Again, a small sample size, but impressive results for a 19-year-old hitter in MLB camp nonetheless.

At no point has Johnson looked overmatched at the plate, even when facing pitchers with MLB experience. He has kept a good approach and consistently hit the ball well. Considering his age, this may be the most impressive part of his showing in Grapefruit League action.

It has been easy to see why Johnson was touted by some as the best pure hitter in the 2022 draft, as well as why he has quickly risen to be one of the top hitting prospects in all of baseball. Even though Johnson has zero chance of winning the job, seeing him respond to being in camp when there is an open competition for the second base job says something as well.

Johnson should start the season back with High-A Greensboro, but assuming he continues to be a plus hitter he should find himself with Double-A Altoona before too long. Johnson will almost assuredly not reach the majors this season. However, with another strong season in the minors he can put himself in a position to earn his first MLB cll-up during the 2025 season, potentially even early in the campaign.

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