After entering the 2020 MLB Draft as a top-100 prospect by Baseball America that some teams reportedly ranked among their top 20, Bellaire Episcopal third baseman/right-handed pitcher Tanner Witt was not selected in this year’s five-round draft.
Shortly after its conclusion, Witt tweeted that he’ll play for the Texas Longhorns after signing with head coach David Pierce last fall.
The past 48 hours have been a great experience and I am honored to be considered by several MLB teams. I enjoyed the process but after much consideration with my family we believe there is work to be done on the 40acres. We are very excited to be part of the Longhorn family!— Tanner Witt (@wittnesstwitty) June 12, 2020
His family history likely helped the Horns — his mother, Lori, played softball at Texas and Witt will become a fourth-generation Longhorn when he enrolls in the fall. So it’s safe to say that he bleeds burnt orange.
“There is no atmosphere like the atmosphere of Longhorn Nation,” he said when he signed.
Variously listed between 6’5 and 6’6 and 185 and 200 pounds, Witt is an imposing presence on the mound or in the batter’s box. The coaches expected him to continue playing both ways in college and compete for immediate playing time. On the mound, he has a low 90s fastball and a curveball that ranks as his best pitch.
“Tanner is a lot like Jared Jones, a super talented two-way player that will be an immediate impact type player as both an infielder and right-handed pitcher,” recruiting coordinator Sean Allen said last fall. “Tanner has as much raw power as any high school kid in the country and has shown plus stuff on the mound this summer. The top-ranked shortstop in Texas and one of the top-ranked players in the country, also was on the 40-man roster for Team USA this summer.”
The other four drafted players are likely to sign and turn pro, but it’s a significant develop for Pierce and his staff to land Witt’s second commitment to play baseball at Texas.