Colt Emerson is an advanced prep hitter

Colt Emerson was an All-Ohio first-team wide receiver as a junior at John Glenn High School in 2021. He contributed in all aspects of the game, serving as the team’s top passing target, an impact defensive back and special teams contributor.

Emerson’s success was impressive, especially since football isn’t his top sport. He is one of the top baseball players in the 2023 prep class. The highly-talented prep shortstop had a strong junior season and then performed well on the showcase circuit, including as a starter on the U.S. national team that captured the 18-and-under World Cup in September.

Due to Emerson’s status and potential on the diamond, he decided only to play baseball during his senior season. Emerson is a prospect for July’s MLB draft and felt his decision was best for his long-term future.

“I love baseball,” Colt Emerson said. “It was really my best sport. As much as I love Friday night lights and all my friends play football, I knew it wasn’t my pathway. I love baseball so much. I just fell way more in love with it than football. It was an easy decision.”

Expectations are high for Emerson during his senior season of baseball this spring. He is an advanced prep hitter with a well-balanced toolset. He is receiving a plethora of interest for the draft, with professional scouts projecting him as a potential first-round pick.

Emerson isn’t shying away from the draft attention. He hopes to impress scouts and raise his draft stock this spring.

“t makes me have a chip on my shoulder because I want to be 1-1,” Emerson said. “Who doesn’t want to be 1-1? I see it as there is work to still do. I want to be the best there is. Really, I’m not satisfied wherever they got me at. I want to be a 1-1 pick. I want to prove this spring that I can be that.”

Emerson is a 6-foot-2, 200-pound left-handed hitting shortstop. He isn’t a flashy player, but he consistently produces at a high level at the plate.

The advanced hitter understands the strike zone and regularly makes hard contact due to his quick hands and simple swing. He drives the ball to the gaps and shows the potential to hit for respectable power in the future.

“I can hit singles, doubles, triples and home runs,” Emerson said. “Don’t write me off for anything. I can get up there and do anything. I can bat leadoff, I can play any position, I will bat ninth and score runs. It doesn’t matter where you put me, as long as I’m playing, I’m going to help out the team no matter what. That is what I really pride myself on.”

Defensively, Emerson primarily plays shortstop. He also has experience playing second base and third base. Emerson has solid arm strength, quick hands and average speed. He makes all the necessary plays at shortstop.

Emerson will remain up the middle defensively in the future, and he believes he can handle shortstop long-term. He worked on his quickness this offseason.

“I feel like I can stay a shortstop for 20 years in the big leagues,” Emerson said. “If I’m fielding every ball, not making errors, making great plays and being the leader of the team, who is going to take me off that position? That is how I see it.”

Besides his status as a top draft prospect, Emerson is an Auburn University commit. The recruiting process started in the months leading up to his freshman year of high school in 2019. A year later, he verbally committed to Auburn, picking the Tigers over Ohio State, Georgia, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.

Auburn is a quality program that consistently wins and produces talent for the pro ranks. Last season, the Tigers advanced to the College World Series for the second time in the last three NCAA Tournaments.

“Honestly, the coaches were a great fit for me, and I had a great relationship with them,” Emerson said. “I knew for sure they could develop me into a major leaguer. I knew I would get a great education at Auburn. Ultimately, I want to win a national championship. There is a chance we can win one there.”

Read more in-depth stories on top 2023 MLB draft prospects at Baseball Prospect Journal.

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Video of Colt Emerson via Kyler Peterson.

Dan Zielinski III has covered the MLB draft for eight years. He has interviewed 433 of the top draft prospects in that period, including four No. 1 overall picks. Multiple publications, including Baseball America, USA Today,, The Arizona Republic and The Dallas Morning News, have quoted his work, while he has appeared on radio stations as a “MLB draft expert.” Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski III is the creator of the Baseball Prospect Journal and has covered the MLB draft since 2015. His draft work originally appeared on, a sports website he started in December 2011. He also covered the Milwaukee Brewers as a member of the credentialed media for four years. Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

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