Matt Gorski

MATT GORSKI, CENTER FIELDER
Born: December 22, 1997
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 198
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Drafted: 2nd Round, 57th Overall, 2019
How Acquired: Draft
College: Indiana University
Agent:

WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE

Gorski was the Pirates’ first college pick in the 2019 draft.  He has plus power and speed, but may have issues making contact.  As a sophomore, he batted 306/404/554, but he fell off to 271/374/498 as a junior.  He evidently went more for power, as his walk, strikeout and home run rates all increased sharply.  He fanned in over a quarter of his at-bats.  Gorski has also had trouble in the wood bat Cape Cod League.  He stole a lot of bases in college, going 39-for-39 as a base stealer in his first two years and 18-for-21 as a junior.  The speed may not be enough by itself for him to stay in center, as scouts believe Gorski needs to improve his routes.  He has a very strong and accurate arm.  Baseball America ranked him 150th among draft prospects and MLB Pipeline 112th.  The Pirates do not have a good track record with hitters who sell out for power, with Casey Hughston and Dylan Busby being recent examples, so Gorski presents a good deal of risk; as FanGraphs put it, he “might not hit at all.”  Gorski signed a week after he was drafted for $243,600 below the slot value.

2019
A-:  223/297/346, 179 AB, 9 2B, 2 3B, 3 HR, 19 BB, 48 K, 11-14 SB

Gorski’s debut went pretty much as the scouting reports suggested.  He showed a modest amount of power and had significant problems making contact.  RHPs ate him alive with breaking balls, holding him to a 190/250/317 line.  He did well against LHPs, with a 327/424/408 line.  Gorski split his time between center and left, and also used his speed on the bases.

It’s not easy to understand why the Pirates committed such a high draft pick and large bonus to Gorski.  The ostensible explanation is that he’s a very athletic player and maybe they can help him improve his ability to make contact.  In fact, the Pirates have identified what they believe are mechanical flaws in Gorski’s swing and are trying to help him adjust.  Unfortunately, while Neal Huntington was GM, the Pirates never — not once — managed to turn a college hitter who needed significant swing adjustments into a good hitter.  Their track record with drafting college hitters under Huntington was one of unrelenting failure.

CONTRACT INFORMATION
2020: Minor league contract
PLAYER INFORMATION
Signing Bonus: $1,000,000
MiLB Debut: 2019
MLB Debut:
MiLB FA Eligible: 2025
MLB FA Eligible:
Rule 5 Eligible: 2022
Added to 40-Man:
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
TRANSACTIONS
June 3, 2019: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 2nd round, 57th overall pick; signed on June 11.