After signing North Carolina Central outfielder Carter Williams, and Illinois right-handed pitcher Ty Weber when the signing period began, the Giants have signed their first prep player of the undrafted period: Tyler Forner, an outfielder from Camas High School in Washington.
Forner made the news official on his Twitter page:
There are three things that jump off the page with Forner that should give Giants fans some optimism and excitement.
- He’s a prep player. Especially in a year like this, where prep players essentially didn’t get to showcase anything their senior year, there’s nothing that’s higher-risk, higher-reward than a player still in high school. But with the teams being capped at $20,000 signing bonuses to undrafted players, there essentially isn’t any risk if you can sign one. Instead, it’s just a largely unknown player who could develop into something exciting.
- He’s a two-sport star. Just half a year ago, Forner led his school to the state championship in football, while being named All-State as a linebacker. Two-sport star means two things in prospecting: It means he’s a great athlete, and it means he has some untapped potential because he hasn’t been focusing on baseball full-time.
- He was intent on going pro. According to a report from Sportbook Live, Forner had Division 1 offers lined up, but planned on going pro the whole time. It’s safe to say that a lot of undrafted free agents are players who think this might be their best or even only chance to get in an MLB organization. But it seems like Forner is making this choice largely based on desire, which means he very well could have a bit more talent than you expect to find in undrafted free agency.
So, that’s all good and dandy and exciting, but it also amounts to nothing more than saying that Forner is an exciting mystery box. Which is pretty much all we know.
But we do know some objective things, as well.
MaxPreps has stats from 12 games from Forner’s junior season. In those 12 games, he hit 8-27 with 4 doubles, 1 triple, 6 walks, and just 2 strikeouts. The publication gives him a slash line of .296/.424/.518.
We also know that some people are pretty high on him. The prospecting organization Perfect Game gives him a grade of 8.5; on their grading rubric, they list 8 as “Potential draft pick and/or excellent college prospect,” and 9 as “Potential top 10 round pick and/or highest level college prospect.”
They also wrote this about him, from his sophomore year:
Tyler Forner is a 2020 OF with a 5-11 185 lb. frame from Camas, WA who attends Camas HS. Medium athletic build with good present strength. Very good runner, 6.69 in the sixty, showed his speed and range very well in the outfield, made some nice catches going up the alley’s from centerfield, developing arm strength and makes accurate soft on line throws. Right handed hitter, closed upright stance, very short swing with a right centerfield orientation, has hand quickness and some bat speed when he gets extended through contact, high contact approach. Good student.
We also know that we have video, so we can get irrationally excited and think about what might happen if the Giants give him some pointers on launch angle.
Tyler Forner, everyone. The newest member of the Giants organization, and the most exciting (so far) of the undrafted free agents.