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MLB Draft

Pittsburgh Pirates Select Termarr Johnson In First Round Of MLB Draft

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Sunday marked another day for the Pirates to add some top-of-the-line talent to their farm system as the 2022 MLB Draft commenced. For the third straight season, Pittsburgh had a top 10 selection as the club found owned the fourth pick in this year’s draft.

With that fourth pick, the Pirates selected prep infielder Termarr Johnson. Johnson, from the state of Georgia, is considered by many to have the top hit tool in this year’s draft class, and is arguably the top prep hitter in decades. MLB Pipeline rates it as a 70-grade on the 20-80 scouting scale.

“We are thrilled to select Termarr with the No. 4 overall selection,” said Ben Cherington, Pirates General
Manager. “We held true to our board and selected who we believe was the best available talent.”

Johnson has exceptional bat-to-ball skills and possesses a strong understanding of the strike zone. Johnson, who isn’t the biggest player physically, possesses impressive power potential. In the summer of 2021, Johnson won the Perfect Game All-American Home Run Derby. Scouts believe he is capable of hitting 25-30 homeruns as a professional.

In the field, Johnson is a capable defender and projects to play second base at the next level. According to Fangraphs, Johnson would rank as the 27th-best prospect on their Top 100 list.

“Termarr has the potential to be a middle-of-the-order impact bat at a premium position,” said general manager Ben Cherington. “He possesses excellent athleticism and equally as good bat-to-ball skills, giving him the potential to join other players to make a significant, everyday impact on future winning Pirates teams.”

The fourth pick in this year’s draft comes with a slot value of $7,002,100, and there is a possibility that Johnson may sign for below that figure, which would allow the Pirates to allocate more funds to their later selections. That strategy worked well for them in the 2021 MLB Draft.

Johnson joins a young crop of promising middle infielders in the Pirates organization, including Oneil Cruz, Nick Gonzales, Liover Peguero, Ji-hwan Bae and others.

This pick marked the first time that general manager Ben Cherington didn’t select a college bat as the man in charge of the Pirates draft. After taking Gonzales in 2020, Cherington and the Pirates selected Henry Davis with the first pick in last year’s draft.

Johnson is committed to play college baseball at Arizona State University.

The Orioles began the evening by selecting shortstop Jackson Holliday with the first pick, followed by outfielder Druw Jones, who was selected second by the D-backs. The Rangers made a surprising pick by taking. Kumar Rocker with the third pick

The Pirates will have two more selections on day one of the draft — No. 36 (Comp A round) and No. 44 (second round).

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