Kevin Parada looks like a middle-to-late first-round draft pick. After his season as the catcher at Georgia Tech, he’s now earning top-1o consideration. It’s not just his flashy offence leading all Division-I catchers with 26 home runs or his .381/.467/.794 slash line. Parada’s defence is becoming more noticeable as well. MLB.com ranks the 20-year-old as the sixth-best prospect in baseball. One of the best high school catchers in the 2020 MLB Draft, Parada could have been a second or third-round pick if he didn’t attend Georgia Tech. After showcasing a fantastic college campaign and summer with the U.S. collegiate national team, he’s likely to be the first backstop selected at the draft.
Scouting grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 60 | Run: 40 | Arm: 45 | Field: 50| Overall: 60
Kevin Parada brings a lot to the plate. His hitting ability and power are the same as scouts grade the tools 60/80, respectively. He doesn’t try too much at the plate as he disciplines his right-handed swing and hitting line drives all over the field. Plus, Parada can make repeated hard contact against any pitching as he’s showcased his power on fields this season. The top draft prospect can move well for a player at his position. As for his defensive strides, his athleticism allows him to throw the ball to second easily and accurately. Furthermore, it can be credited with two things, the preseason work he did to improve his strength and the changes he made in his catching stance heading into his sophomore year. Parada could fit into the middle of the big-league batting order little ways down the road.
Parada has a good arm, but his defensive skills are questionable. He runs well for a catcher; however, he’s not the most agile or physical catcher. His arm and field scouting grades aren’t off by much, with his arm a 45/80 and 50/80. There were improvements to his game as a sophomore. The scouts’ credit Parada for working on his defense. He will need to continue developing his arm strength and throwing accuracy, especially after erasing just 29 percent of base stealers in 2021-22.
MLB Player Comparison
Parada shows similarities to Georgia Tech alum, Joey Bart. Georgia Tech has a strong history of developing catchers for the MLB draft. In addition to Bart going second overall to the San Francisco Giants in 2018, he was coming off as the ACC Baseball Player of the Year. Both players share similar bat speeds, strength and leverage that give them power all over the field from the right side of the plate.
But, after Bart was drafted, Buster Posey’s end to his 2018 season saw him with one home run in 250 plate appearances. Posey’s 2019 season saw him finish with a mediocre-.700 OPS. Bart finished his 2019 with a .317/.368/.544 in Double-A. The future of the Giants catching wasn’t complicated back then; nevertheless, here’s hoping the same doesn’t happen to Parada. Altogether, Bart’s profile matches one of Parada’. They have the natural pop they don’t need to sell for big home runs. Though they are well-below-average runners, they’re very athletic for catchers.