ETHAN PAUL, SHORTSTOP
|Born: August 27, 1996
Drafted: 9th Round, 274th Overall, 2019
How Acquired: Draft
College: Vanderbilt University
WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE
|The Pirates drafted Paul as a junior but didn’t sign him, then they took him again as a senior. He played primarily second base as a sophomore and junior, but moved to short as a senior after the departure of Connor Kaiser, whom the Pirates drafted in 2018. Baseball America rated Paul 326th in the 2018 draft class, as he lost status during a weak season in which he batted just .240 with a very high strikeout total (60 in 216 at-bats). He bounced back with a 325/392/524 line as a senior and cut his strikeouts to 55 in 252 ABs, although that’s still a high rate. Paul went 17-for-18 in steals in 2018 and 8-for-10 in 2019, though he is more of a smart runner than a fast runner. Defensively, his arm is average and he probably profiles more as a utility player going forward. BA in 2019 rated Paul 335th in the draft class and 12th in Tennessee. Paul signed about a month after the draft as his team was in the College World Series. His bonus was $92,300 below the slot value.
Paul played short more or less regularly after he signed, although he missed the final week of the season. His final batting line was very close to the league averages. He had a good walk rate, but struck out a lot for a hitter who isn’t projected to hit for power. He hit LHPs slightly better than RHPs.
Paul made a big jump, spending the season at Indianapolis as a utility infielder, apart from a couple of brief stretches at Altoona. He drew some walks, but otherwise didn’t hit much and had trouble making contact. He mostly played second, but spent some time at short and third.
Paul will evidently be an upper-level utility player, although the Pirates have a lot of upper-level infielders.
|2022: Minor league contract
|Signing Bonus: $60,000
MiLB Debut: 2019
MiLB FA Eligible: 2025
MLB FA Eligible:
Rule 5 Eligible: 2022
Added to 40-Man:
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
|June 6, 2018: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 26th round, 774th overall pick.
June 4, 2019: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 9th round, 274th overall pick; signed on July 1.