The Houston Astros used their first round choice on Tennessee outfielder Drew Gilbert.
Houston picked Drew Gilbert with the 28th selection off the board. The five-foot-nine outfielder out of the University of Tennessee bats and throws left. A St. Paul, MN native, Gilbert was initially a 35th round choice of the Minnesota Twins in 2019, but chose instead to matriculate. It turned out to be a wise choice. Not only did he get a college education, but the 28th choice is slotted for a $2,620,400 signing bonus (give or take). Gilbert will turn 22-years-old on September 27.
Of course, last season Houston was suffering from a lack of action on the first day of the draft. To put it simply, they didn’t have any choices until late in the third round due to restrictions because...reasons. The less said about the 2021 draft, the better, so I’ll leave it there.
With the 28th choice in the 2022 draft, the Houston Astros select @gillygoobear. Drew Gilbert is a left-handed outfielder out of Tennessee.— Astros prospects HQ (@AstrosProspects) July 18, 2022
...Aaaaanyway, Gilbert carved out a .362/.455/.673 line in his final year (presumably) of college play. Although not selected as a pitcher, he also touches 93 on the gun, and has a 1.163 career WHIP at the Division 1 level (over 16 1⁄3 innings of work).
As a hitter, Gilbert has an aggressive approach that can sometimes sacrifice quality for a big swing. According to MLB.COM pipeline:
His bat speed and strength give him enough raw pop to hit 15-20 homers per season without selling out. Gilbert has solid to plus speed and will steal and take extra bases.
Gilbert’s size, speed, high OBP, and left-handedness puts me in mind of a young Brett Butler, although his power is somewhat greater. Hey, if the Astros get a Brett Butler with more power, I think that’s a pretty good result.
Stay tuned to The Crawfish Boxes for all the latest on the 2022 draft.