The Mariners continue to use free agency to shore up weaker positions on the farm. Yesterday the team signed Auburn catcher and Kirkland native Matt Scheffler; today it was announced they signed Vanderbilt’s Ty Duvall.
The 5’11” Duvall is a career .284/.423/.418 hitter at Vandy, and while he’s not a power-hitting backstop—his career high for home runs is five, last season—he’s an on-base machine with a career walk rate of 22% and 137 bases in 328 ABs. Those bat-to-ball skills and strong plate discipline combine to put Duvall near the top group of available free agents, according to Driveline’s new college WAR model:
Based on the information I can find on their site (this is an experimental system that Driveline just rolled out), Ty Duvall is not far behind and has nearly identical WAR numbers.— Max Herz (@MaxHerzTalks) June 13, 2020
While Duvall didn’t play in the premier Cape Cod League, he tore up the Northwoods League in the summer of 2018, the year before he was drafted in the 25th round by Oakland:
The Lebanon, OH native might be more of an on-base threat than a power threat, but that doesn’t mean he can’t get into one occasionally:
Duvall is a capable backstop who has handled a variety of premium arms at Vanderbilt, including the likely top arm in the 2021 draft, Kumar Rocker. In 2019, he did not commit a single error at the catching position.
Duvall is beloved by Vandy coach Tim Corbin, who called him “team-oriented,” a “special kid” who is “serious about school and his college baseball career” and always has baseball “on the front of his mind.”
.@VandyBaseball coach Tim Corbin on sophomore catcher Ty Duvall, who drove in four runs and had the game winning hit in his first ever SEC start behind the plate as the Dores beat Ole Miss, 8-7: pic.twitter.com/kcHDZJK0Nz— Max Herz (@MaxHerzTalks) April 16, 2018
Duvall will be yet another player with College World Series experience joining the organization. Hopefully their championship-seeking ways are contagious.