MLB Draft

Giants select two-way prospect Eldridge with No. 16 pick

NBC Universal, Inc.

The Giants were a finalist for Shohei Ohtani a few years ago and plan to go after him again this offseason. A year ago, they drafted left-handed pitcher/designated hitter Reggie Crawford with their first-round pick

They certainly appear to like two-way players, and on Sunday they added another one to the organization. 

The Giants selected Bryce Eldridge with their first-round pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, taking him 16th overall and making it two straight years with a tall two-way talent as their first selection. Eldridge, 18, is a right-handed pitcher/first baseman from James Madison High School in Virginia. 

The Giants have let Crawford pitch and be a DH this season in Low-A, and they likely will let Eldridge take a similar path. The 6-foot-7 left-handed hitter is said to have good raw power and has hit the mid-90s as a pitcher. 

During an interview on ESPN's broadcast, Eldridge said Ohtani has been an inspiration as he tries to forge his own path. 

"It's challenging. Obviously not many people do it," he told ESPN's Jessica Mendoza. "There's one guy doing it in the big leagues now and being able to watch (Ohtani) do that on a daily basis, he's really created a path for guys like me. I've worked so hard to get where I'm at with both, so to be able to be in the same conversation as Ohtani or the American Ohtani feels pretty rewarding, but obviously there's a lot more work to be done."

Eldridge grew up just outside the Washington D.C. area as a Nationals fan and said during the interview that Bryce Harper is one of his favorite players. Like Harper, he ended up becoming a first-round pick.

Eldridge was ranked 23rd on MLB Pipeline's top draft prospects list, with their scouting report saying he has a good slider and repeats his delivery well. 

"At the plate, the left-handed hitter has some serious raw power with leverage but has some feel to hit, with a relatively short stroke," Pipeline wrote. "He has soft hands at first base and moves around the bag well, though he is athletic enough with a plus arm where right field could be a very viable option."

Eldridge became the fifth first-rounder to be selected since Farhan Zaidi took over as president of baseball operations and Michael Holmes was hired to run amateur scouting. The most successful of the bunch has been Patrick Bailey, who helped turn the season around in May. Hunter Bishop (2019) had Tommy John surgery earlier this year and Will Bednar (2021) has been sidelined by injuries, as well. Last year's selection, Crawford, is off to a promising start this year with the San Jose Giants. 

The Giants have three of the first 69 picks of the draft. Their second-rounder will be at No. 52 overall and they also have a compensation pick after putting a qualifying offer on Carlos RodĂłn before he signed with the New York Yankees.

Download and follow the Giants Talk Podcast

Contact Us