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Cade Horton 2020 MLB Draft Profile

Cade Horton

The two-way player is becoming more prominent in MLB. Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels is one example, but there are others such as Michael Lorenzen of the Cincinnati Reds, and Brendan McKay of the Tampa Bay Rays who have also made appearances as batters and pitchers in MLB. Cade Horton could be the next two-way player to take MLB by storm.

Horton is a product from Norman High School in Oklahoma who can pitch and play shortstop. He was named the Oklahoma State Player of the Year by Gatorade. His size is good at six-feet, two-inches tall, weighing 190 pounds. ranks him as the 47th-best prospect in the draft.

Not only is he a two-way baseball player, but also a two-sport star. Horton accounted for over 4,000 yards and 41 touchdowns at quarterback in his senior year. He has committed to play both baseball and football at the University of Oklahoma.

Below are highlights of Horton hitting, fielding, and pitching:


Scouts think that Horton’s ability to pitch stands out most. He throws a fastball that sits in the mid-90s, topping out at 96 MPH. He backs up his fastball with two off-speed pitches sitting in high-70s-low-to-80s MPH range. Those pitches are a changeup and a slider, the former of which is considered to be more advanced than most high school prospects possess.

Should Horton solely focus on pitching, all three offerings can be plus pitches, with grades of 55/60 right now. What makes his potential even better is that he can locate and throw strikes on both sides of the plate. That is a result of his effortless delivery and three-quarter arm slot.

Although the pitching is the best part of his game, he is still considered to be a legitimate shortstop prospect. His arm translates from the mound to the field, and it is the best part of his game as a position player. He has power that can play at the next level. His right-handed swing is smooth after he loads with a leg kick, creating good launch angle with his swing.

Horton also plays a good defensive shortstop. Aside from his arm, he ranges well to both sides and is able to make difficult plays.


While signability is an issue for a lot of prospects coming out of high school, it is particularly complex for Horton. As mentioned, he is a double commit to Oklahoma to play baseball and football. He has made it known, that he would be open to forgoing both sports in order to turn professional. However, there is no guarantee that he will sign, given the leverage that he has.

Aside from the logistics of signing Horton, his biggest weaknesses would be his hit tool. He did hit .420 in high school, but scouts do not see that pure hitting ability translating well to the next level. His hit tool grade is a below average 45/80.

There are no glaring weaknesses to his pitching game at this time.

MLB Comp

While there are no shortstop, pitcher two-way players in MLB right now, Horton has aspects of his game that are similar to the two-way players that are in the game today. In terms of pitching, Horton is more similar to Lorenzen, who throws the same pitches in a more diverse repertoire and similar velocities. Offensively, his power relates more to Ohtani than it does to Lorenzen or McKay.

It will be interesting to see if, should Horton go professional, he follows a similar path to that of Hunter Greene. Greene was a right-handed pitcher and shortstop, who the Reds drafted second overall in 2017. Greene has not made his MLB debut yet, but he has already transitioned to a full-time pitcher.

Coming out of high school Green had similar scouting grades to Horton on both sides of the ball, but with a better arm and better hit tool. Horton does have a better changeup at this stage compared to Greene, but the rest of their scout grades are similar.

Cade Horton presents one of the most interesting draft cases of any high school prospect. Given his potential at two positions as well as at two sports, general managers will have a lot to consider when evaluating him.

Main Photo: Embed from Getty Images


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