The Detroit Tigers have drafted Franklin Community High School CF Max Clark with the 3rd pick of the MLB Draft. The Tigers selected Clark over power-hitting college outfielder Wyatt Langford, who went 4th overall to the Rangers.
Clark began playing baseball as a child in his local Little League before he began playing travel baseball with the Indiana Bulls, an Indiana travel team featuring alumni such as former Tiger Tucker Barnhart, Scott Rolen, and Lance Lynn. He committed to play college baseball at Vanderbilt University but will obviously enter the Detroit Tigers farm system.
Clark attended Franklin Community High School in Franklin, Indiana, where he plays on their baseball team as an outfielder and pitcher. He also plays on their football team as a wide receiver. As a sophomore in 2021, he was named the Indiana Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year after batting .450 with six home runs, thirty RBIs, and 31 stolen bases, alongside pitching to a 0.84 ERA and 120 strikeouts over fifty innings. As a junior on the football field, he caught 25 passes for 547 yards and four touchdowns. During his junior year on the baseball team, he batted .577 with nine home runs, 32 RBIs, 31 walks, and 22 stolen bases and was named the Indiana Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year for the second straight season. That summer, he participated in the Prospect Development Pipeline League at the USA Baseball National Training Complex in Cary, North Carolina. He also played for Team USA in the 2021 WBSC U-18 World Cup, helping lead the team to a gold medal with a .294 batting average over eight games, and played in the Perfect Game All-American Classic at Chase Field.
He finished his senior year batting .646 with six home runs, 33 RBIs, and 45 runs scored and was named the Gatorade Baseball Player of the Year.
I felt like once Paul Skenes went 1st overall to Pittsburgh, either Dylan Crews or Wyatt Langford was a lock for Detroit. Crews and Langford will make an impact at the big league level way sooner than Max Clark will. I thought that with two elite college bats available, there was no way Scott Harris would pass them up. Detroit needs help asap offensively. Crews or Langford could’ve made an impact as early as 2024. It’s gonna take a few years for 18-year-old Max Clark to develop and advance to the majors. However, it’s hard to give the pick a bad grade because we won’t know who was the better player for years down the road. Detroit took Riley Greene out of high school a couple of years ago, and it paid off, so who knows, maybe Max Clark