A pair of future MLB All-Stars for the Atlanta Braves will get a chance to shine in the 2021 All-Star Future’s game in Denver.
While the Atlanta Braves look poised to have at least two potential starters in the 2021 MLB All-Star game this year at Coors Field in Ronald Acuña Jr. and Ozzie Albies (Freddie Freeman is also gaining some ground in the first baseman voting), a couple blue chip prospects will be able to showcase to baseball fans what the outfield for the Braves could look like in a few years.
Outfielders Drew Waters and Michael Harris II were recently announced as players for the 2021 All-Star Future’s Game. They will compete with fellow National League prospects to take on their counterparts from the American League.
This is the second year that the rosters will be divided between the American and National Leagues. Previously, the Future’s Game was set up with players from the United States teaming up to face a “World team” of prospects from different countries.
Braves writer Mark Bowman also pointed out other familiar Braves who will be participating in the event as well:
Waters, the 2017 second round pick of the Braves and a native of Woodstock, GA, is currently slashing .230/.344/.338 on the year with 3 home runs, 10 RBIs, and 12 stolen bases (all in AAA Gwinnett). Those aren’t exactly eye popping stats, but Waters has been a career .291 hitter in his four seasons in the minor leagues.
With the outfield struggles of the Braves this season, many feel that Atlanta should call up Waters to play right now. This topic was addressed here on Tomahawk Take about a month ago.
In High-A Rome this year, Michael Harris II is slashing .319/.341/.464 with an OPS of .805. He is currently listed as the No. 9 prospect in Atlanta’s farm system (via MLB.com) and like Waters, is also a Georgia native.
Harris gained a huge following back in spring training thanks to his hot start. David O’Brien of The Athletic (subscription required) wrote an excellent article about him back in March, and former Braves outfielder and longtime mentor and coach Marquis Grissom had this to say about Harris:
"“All I can say as a former player is, he’s different…And the last time I saw a player when I said he was different, that was Chipper Jones, that was Barry Bonds, that was Gary Sheffield, that was Jim Thome.”“He stood out with his speed, his arm, his power, baseball IQ and just his love for the game. That’s what got my interest and when I knew he was going to be something special, just his love for the game.”"
It’s hard not to get hyped up about Harris when hearing stuff like that about him, especially from a former Gold Glove outfielder like Grissom. Though it might be a couple more years before we see Michael in the big leagues, there’s a lot to like about his game so far.
The 2021 All-Star Future’s Game will take place on July 11th at 3:00 pm EST.