Tyler Frank drew little interest from professional scouts as a high school senior at American Heritage (Fla.) in 2015.
Three years after going undrafted, Frank has improved his skills at Florida Atlantic and is in position to go early in the 2018 MLB Draft, which begins June 4. MLB.com ranks the junior shortstop as the 75th-best prospect in this year’s draft class.
“You just have to have fun with it,” said Frank on the draft attention. “Your coaches and teammates are the ones you lean on. You go out there and give it your all. At the end of the day, you have to be content with whatever happens.”
Frank has been FAU’s top offensive producer this spring. In 50 games, Frank is hitting .320 with 11 home runs and 28 RBIs, while drawing 38 walks compared to 28 strikeouts.
His numbers are comparable to last season’s results. Frank displayed excellent plate discipline, posting a .336 batting average with 11 homers, 43 RBIs and 41 walks in 57 games in 2017.
Frank wasn’t known as a power hitter after recording one home run as a freshman in 2016, but has displayed potential in that category the last two years. He possesses solid plate disciple and the ability to drive the ball to all fields.
“The beautiful thing about baseball is you can always get better at everything,” he said. “I just want to prove in all aspects and get better every day.”
Defensively, Frank has spent time behind the plate and at shortstop in his three years at FAU. As a freshman in 2016, Frank served as FAU’s catcher despite a lack of experience at the position.
FAU’s starting catcher suffered an injury about a month before the start of the 2016 season, and the coaching staff approached Frank about moving from the middle infield to behind the plate.
“I didn’t think it would go as well as it did,” he said. “Once I got comfortable and had the coaches working with me, it ended up being fun and working out.”
Frank moved to shortstop as a sophomore and has remind there since. He possesses above-average arm strength but scouts are unsure if he has the range to stick at the position long-term.
Frank committed 13 errors at shortstop last season. He’s matched that total this year with three games left in the regular season and postseason play looming.
If he doesn’t remain at shortstop in the professional ranks, scouts envision him moving to second base. Some even wonder if he could catch at the next level.
Despite speculation on his future position, Frank believes he isn’t destined for a position change in pro ball.
“At the next level, I envision myself playing shortstop,” he said. “I think I’ve come into my own last year and this year. Learning from coach (Greg) Mamula and his defensive aspects this year has allowed me to take it to another level, which was one of my main goals coming into the season.”