Oakland A’s: Scouting Kyle McCann
By David Hill
Another part of the Oakland A’s abundance of riches at the catching position, Kyle McCann has the potential to intrigue as he develops.
It is easy to get lost amongst the Oakland A’s abundance of catching prospects. Sean Murphy is one of the top catching prospects in all of baseball. Jonah Heim had a breakout 2019, which has the A’s excited by his future. Tyler Soderstrom was the A’s first round pick this year. For a prospect like Kyle McCann, it is easy to be lost in the shuffle.
A fourth round selection in the 2019 MLB Draft, McCann actually began his collegiate career at first due to the presence of Joey Bart. He had his chance behind the plate in 2019, but was dealing with a sore shoulder that limited his defensive abilities. Even with that issue, he showed tremendous power to all fields, making him an intriguing prospect.
McCann showed that he was no match for the Arizona League with six extra base hits and five walks in 25 plate appearances before he was promoted to the Vermont Lake Monsters. He struggled in the New York Pennsylvania League, posting a .189/.289/.343 batting line with 81 strikeouts in 225 plate appearances. He did hit seven homers and seven doubles and drew 25 walks, so there were some positives in his performance.
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That performance fits his offensive profile. McCann has tremendous power, and has been compared to Chris Davis with his raw pop. He also reminds of Davis in terms of his strikeouts and walks, as he does an excellent job of working the count, but does have issues making contact consistently. It is also important to note that catchers take longer to develop offensively in the first place, so this could change in time.
There are also questions about McCann defensively. At 6’2″ and 217 pounds, he is a large target behind the plate, but also has some struggles blocking pitches in the dirt. When healthy, he has a strong arm, but has struggled with his throwing accuracy. He does have soft hands and surprising mobility, but given the A’s catching depth, his future could be at first base.
Should that be the case, McCann has the power to make such a transition work. If he can make more consistent contact and reduce his strikeout rate, it is possible that he could develop into the type of player that will hit approximately .250 to .260 with 25 to 30 homers.
Kyle McCann is a long term project for the Oakland A’s. As a part of the 60 man roster, his learning curve could be accelerated, but his time is still yet to come.