Harry Ford – Catcher
North Cobb High School
Source – Michael Bradburn and Bryan Mcwilliam with theScore
While the Blue Jays are stocked with catching talent within the farm system in Alejandro Kirk, Riley Adams, and Gabriel Moreno, Michael Bradburn and Bryan Mcwilliam with theScore.com predict that the organization will scoop up #13 ranked high school catcher Harry Ford with their 19th overall pick.
Ford is widely regarded for his athleticism and ability to hit for contact and power in the batter’s box, with the ability to spray ball across the diamond against advanced pitchers his age. Standing at 5’10”, the Georgia native has an impressive bat speed that helps him generate power and plus speed on the base paths, clocking in at 6.42 seconds over the 60-yard dash, something not usually seen with catchers.
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The issue with drafting a catcher out of a high school is whether or not they can stay at the position as they move through the farm system. Scouts believe he has the ability both offensively and defensively to stay behind the plate, a good vote of confidence considering he has limited experience at other positions. If the position doesn’t work out for Ford, the Jays could try him up the middle or have him in the outfield considering his arm does rate at 55 per MLB.com. Ford does have a commitment to Georgia Tech, something teams will have to consider during the draft.
With selecting Harry Ford, it would most likely fall into the “drafting the best player on the board” type of scenario, as the Jays don’t necessarily need another catcher with options like Kirk and Moreno in the system but he has a lot of potential to turn into a top tier prospect with high upside. He has garnered comparisons to Hall of Famer Craig Biggio and if Ford is still available when the club steps up to the podium, don’t be surprised if the Blue Jays pull the trigger on another catcher.
Even if he can’t hold onto the catcher role, having an athletic player like Ford is an asset rather than a deterrence, even if he is patrolling a corner outfield position instead of where he was drafted at.
The last time the Blue Jays selected a catcher with their first pick in the MLB Draft was Matt Stark back in 1983. J.P. Arencibia (2007) and Max Pentecost (2014) were the most recent catchers drafted by the Blue Jays in the first round, however, they were not the first selection by the team that year.