Tyler Soderstrom ending questions about his future role
By David Hill
The potential is there for Tyler Soderstrom. The Oakland A’s top prospect is an exciting player at the plate, someone who could move quickly through the system. However, there were questions, particularly about his long term home defensively as he is still extremely raw as a catcher.
Those questions should be over. Soderstrom is showing a marked improvement behind the plate, making the catcher position his permanent home.
Tyler Soderstrom silencing questions about future position
Those questions made sense when Soderstrom was selected with the 26th overall pick in the 2020 MLB Draft. Despite a strong arm, he was not the primary catcher on his high school team, leaving him behind when it came to the defensive aspect of his game.
Soderstrom had been considered particularly raw in terms of calling a game and blocking pitches in the dirt. Those issues, coupled with his athleticism, made it possible that Soderstrom would be shifted to third or a corner outfield spot.
That is no longer the case. Yes, it is just an individual drill without a batter in the box or a game situation. But Soderstrom showed a faster pop time and solid accuracy with his throws. As he threw out just 21% of would-be base stealers last year, any improvement will make a difference.
While this slows the excitement for his bat reaching the majors quickly, it is great news for the A’s. Soderstrom could be a superstar behind the plate if his defense is at least passable. Should he continue making strides, that will easily be the case.
There were questions about where Tyler Soderstrom would play for the Oakland A’s going forward. Those questions have been answered.