2023 MLB Draft Prospect Profile: Cole Carrigg


“Hey Siri, find me a baseball player who can do everything”

Ok, this is what I found:

In an era of increasing specialization, Cole Carrigg does everything. The San Diego State junior plays anywhere on the field, hits for average, hits for power, steals bases, and even made 4 pitching appearances in the Cape Cod league this past summer. And he’s a switch hitter! 

Sitting at 6 foot 3, 200 lbs, Carrigg hails from Turlock, California, a couple hours east of San Francisco. Following a decorated high school career, Carrigg went undrafted in the truncated 2020 MLB draft and honored his commitment to SDSU. He’s been nothing short of fantastic in his 2+ college years so far, slashing a combined .345/.409/.477 over 354 at bats. 

The one part to push back against before declaring Carrigg as a true five tool prospect is his power. He’s maintained above average slugging percentages throughout his college and Cape career, but nothing truly eye popping. Generally, this would mean a guy who maintains solid power throughout college but might not translate much into pro ball. Sure enough, MLB gives him a 40 grade for power on the 20-80 scale, with 20 being the lowest and 80 the highest. He might be a five tool college guy, but is not quite the potential future five starrer someone like Max Clark is. 

His full scouting grades from MLB.com are:

Hit: 55 | Power: 40 | Run: 60 | Arm: 60 | Field: 50 | Overall: 50

These grades highlight his current five tool ability projected as a little less on a pro stage, power being his clear lowest. One interesting grade is the 50 field. Carrigg might not have gold glove potential anywhere, but he has legitimate ability at all up the middle positions. A solid hitter with good speed and a good arm in center or at short is not too rare, but a switch hitting catcher with a strong arm, speed and a good hit tool will really turn some heads.

I started this article by presenting Carrigg as the counter among prep and college players specializing earlier and earlier. It’s certainly cool for him to have maintained this utility status even into his junior year of college, but is it beneficial for him in the long term? Guys who don’t have a clear position going into the draft are usually defensive liabilities who carry all their value through hitting. The true defensive studs have their defined position. Carrigg sits somewhere in between: a good but not incredible hitter, a good defender with no true position. 

This profile makes him one of the most interesting prospects in this draft.  What if he had committed to catcher coming into college? What if he had committed to being a true shortstop? Will big league teams want him to commit to one position immediately or stick as a potential big league utility guy?

With all this in mind, the range of where he goes in the draft is pretty wide. A team could see him as an especially toolsy catcher and take him high in the 20’s. Another team might look at just the pure baseball ability and figure out the specifics later and take him in the 30’s. Or maybe teams see a guy who has no one skill good enough to make him an impactful big leaguer, and he’ll fall into the 40’s or 50’s. Wherever he goes, it’ll be fascinating to watch his development in the minors.


Carrigg does not fit into an easy prospect mold, and all these are just vague approximations. In reality, Carrigg is probably going to cut his own unique path.

Current Prospect Comparison: Endy Rodriguez

Evaluators describe Rodriguez as a good hitter, and above average athlete at catcher who can get some innings at 2B and OF. Carrigg roughly fits that profile, although much more extreme. Carrigg is faster, less powerful, and is a legitimate option at SS and CF, rather than just absorbing some innings there. Rodriguez checked in at #55 for the Pirates on MLB.com’s Top 100 Prospects. Carrigg could conceivably become fairly similar to Rodriguez and reach that prospect level if he committed to catcher, bulked up a little more for more power and less speed. Then again, he might just as likely keep his current body, and stay as a much more athletic player, not as committed to catcher. 

Endy Rodriguez Grades: Hit: 55 | Power: 55 | Run: 45 | Arm: 55 | Field: 50

Current MLB Comparisons:

Ford Proctor-

Career Minor League Stats: .229/.348/.349, 31 HR

A back end 40-man guy for the Giants, Proctor catches and can play all over the infield. He’s likely going to exist as a utility guy to shuttle back and forth between AAA and the Majors for the full 5 options allowed. 

Austin Barnes

Career Stats: .225/.333/.358, 4.9 bWar

A decent hitting backup catcher who picks up the occasional inning at 2B or 3B. 

Mookie Betts-

Career Stats: .293/.368/.520, 56.4 bWAR, 213 HR

The absolute best case scenario, Betts and Carrigg have more in common than it first seems like. Betts was a minor league shortstop who moved to second, before eventually settling in right field in the majors. He started as a fleet footed, strong hitter without much power. His minor league career saw him develop a better approach and fill out his body for more power without sacrificing speed en route to the five tool MVP candidate we know him as today. 

An MLB team could choose to capitalize on maximizing Carrigg’s natural athletic ability in the outfield rather than crunching him up behind the plate, putting him on a similar path to the young Betts. 

If you now have no idea where Carrigg is going to end up five years down the line, then I think I’ve done my job. He has one of the widest ranges of potential outcomes as a big leaguer. What we do know if Carrigg is a good baseball player who can pretty much do everything on the field right now. How long that ability lasts as he progresses to better competition, and which skills will carry over strongest is the key question MLB scouting departments will try to answer in the couple months until the 2023 MLB Draft. 

Regardless of what happens, Carrigg will be a fun guy to keep a tab on over the next decade. 

Categories: Articles, MLB Draft, Prospect Profiles

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