The Cardinals select outfielder Chase Davis with their 2023 first-round pick

The St. Louis Cardinals made a home run pick with OF Chase Davis out of the University of Arizona
State Farm College Baseball Showdown
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With the 21st overall pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, the St. Louis Cardinals selected OF Chase Davis out of the University of Arizona.

Davis had been connected to the Cardinals leading up to the draft and represents another high-upside pick from the Randy Flores-led drafting department.

Davis is a left-handed, toolsy outfielder with about as much upside as you can find outside of the top of the draft. In 147 career collegiate games, Davis slashed .319/.444/.644 with 39 HR and 132 RBI in a competitive Pac-12 conference.


Player comparisons should always be taken with a grain of salt, but one name that Davis has drawn a lot of comparisons to already is Carlos Gonzalez, the former left-handed slugging outfielder from the Colorado Rockies.

The biggest flaw that you can point to in his game right now is some swing-and-miss that needs to be improved upon, but scouts seem to have liked his new approach this last season that allowed him to make more contact while still showing off his electric power.

Davis likely projects as a corner outfielder but could play his way into center field if the Cardinals try to trout him out there. He has a great arm and good athleticism, so if he does remain in the corner, he has the tools to be very good out there.

One person who saw this pick coming was @KareemSSN, who does excellent prospect analysis and actually called the Cooper Hjerpe pick last year as well.

I asked Kareem about the Davis pick, and he had this to say about Davis.

"Absolutely love the Chase Davis pick. Davis is one of the best hitters in the class and to get him at 21 is a steal. Davis has a beautiful left-handed swing that reminds a lot of people of Carlos Gonzalez. His underlying data is very similar to Dylan Crews (2nd overall pick) and Wyatt Langford (4th overall pick). He actually has a higher MaxEV (115.6 MPH) and ZoneContact% (88.8%) than both of them while chasing only 16.7% of the time. He’s a great athlete with a strong arm but is more than likely a corner outfielder long-term. Overall just a tremendous pick and they should be able to get him for around slot value which is great since the Cardinals don’t pick again till the 3rd round."

This is a friendly reminder that rarely do teams draft for "need" in Major League Baseball. Most of these prospects are years away. When you look back at this draft in a few years, you want to have picked the players you liked the most, and the Cardinals clearly liked Davis and the talent he brings to their system.

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Four of the Cardinals' top five prospects are starting pitchers - Tink Hence, Gordon Graceffo, Cooper Hjerpe, and Michael McGreevy. They also have other arms like Brycen Mautz, Pete Hansen, Connor Thomas, Inohan Paniagua, Max Rajcic, and Ian Bedell. It's likely St. Louis will add pitching throughout the entire draft.

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