White Sox: Zack Collins Rated Fourth-Best Catching Prospect

MLB Pipeline rated Zack Collins as the fourth-best catching prospect. The White Sox hope the talented 21 year old can live up to expectations.

The Chicago White Sox farm system underwent a massive overhaul this offseason. Suddenly, this team has a plethora of young talent that bodes well for the future. The White Sox drafted Zack Collins 10th overall in 2016. Now, he’s a top prospect and MLB Pipeline recently rated the 21 year old as the fourth-best catching prospect in baseball.

Collins has an immense 6’3″ frame and was one of the best hitters available in the 2016 draft. This team has issues with offense, so the hope is he can turn into a threat at the plate. In 39 games in the minors, the lefty hit .244 with six home runs and 18 RBIs. The organization hopes he can continue to build off that. Some scouts believe he has the tools to hit 25 home runs a season. This is huge because it would give the White Sox the left-handed bat they need.

The scouting report on Collins is pretty simple. He has a lot of power and does a great job drawing walks. He’s patient at the plate and can work the count. The biggest knock on his game will be whether or not he can stick as a catcher. Some scouts believe he would be better off at first base. However, the White Sox believe they can continue his development so he can stick behind the plate.

That would be important for this organization because they need a catcher. It’s been an area of need and they really haven’t done anything to address it during the offseason. Unless you count the addition of Geovany Soto. However, if Collins can develop into a catcher, this team will have filled another area of need.

It may not be the worst thing if Collins doesn’t stick as a catcher. The benefit of him playing first base or another position would be he could play 158-160 games a season. Typically your catcher doesn’t play that many games. And that could hurt this team if one of their best offensive weapons isn’t in the lineup everyday. In fact, Yadier Molina was the only catcher to play over 130 games last season. He appeared in 146 and started 142 in 2016. However, they could use him at both catcher and designated hitter, so they ensure they have his bat available on a regular basis.

Collins obviously has a bright future ahead of him. It’s just going to be a matter of where he will play. The White Sox definitely have a need at catcher. But if they need to move him to first base, we already know teams have shown interest in Jose Abreu. It may not be the worst thing to happen but I think everyone agrees Collins should be given a shot at catcher. This team is definitely more dangerous if both he and Abreu are in the lineup.

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