MLB Draft 2022: Baltimore Orioles select Jackson Holliday with first overall pick

Orioles select Jackson Holliday with first overall pick in 2022 MLB Draft originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

The Baltimore Orioles selected high school shortstop Jackson Holliday with the first overall pick in the 2022 MLB Draft on Sunday.

Holliday, the son of seven-time All-Star outfielder Matt Holliday, was named Baseball America’s National Player of the Year after he broke Philadelphia Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto’s single-season national high school record for hits with 89 in the 2022 campaign. The 6-foot-1,175-pound left-handed hitter posted a .685 batting average with 17 home runs, 79 RBIs and a 2.141 OPS in 41 games as a senior at Stillwater High School in Oklahoma.

“Holliday has an advanced approach, no surprise given his roots, and a knack for putting the barrel on the ball,” MLB.com’s scouting report of the shortstop from earlier this year says. “He usually makes consistent hard contact, though he didn’t during the summer when he let his simple left-handed stroke get too long. After getting bigger and stronger, he’s hitting the ball with more authority than ever this spring, and he also looks more relaxed at the plate and is letting his considerable power come naturally. 

“Holliday has gotten faster as he has gotten stronger, and he now flashes plus-plus run times as a senior and is a consistent plus runner. He’s throwing better too, and his solid to plus arm strength and enhanced quickness give him a better opportunity to remain at shortstop. His high baseball IQ also helps his chances after many evaluators previously believed he was destined for second or third base.”

Holliday is committed to Oklahoma State but won’t be suiting up for the Cowboys as long as Baltimore can ink him to a contract. The slot value of the No. 1 pick is $8,846,900.

High school outfielder Druw Jones, who was considered by some as the top prospect in the 2022 class, was picked right after Holliday by the Arizona Diamondbacks. Jones, like Holliday, is also the son of a former multi-time All-Star in Andruw Jones. High school shortstop Termarr Johnson, another strong contender to be picked first, went fourth overall to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

This was the second time in four years that the O’s owned the first overall pick. Baltimore selected catcher Adley Rutschman No. 1 overall back in 2019. Rutschman was called up to the bigs for the first time in May.

Holliday now joins a Baltimore farm system that was recently ranked fourth-best by FanGraphs. The O’s have a pair of top five prospects according to MLB Pipeline in right-handed pitcher Grayson Rodriguez (No. 4) and infielder Gunnar Henderson (No. 5). Baltimore also has three other prospects ranked inside the top 100 in outfielder Colton Cowser (No. 41), left-handed pitcher DL Hall (No. 66) and shortstop Jordan Westburg (No. 93).

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