On this edition of the Pittsburgh Pirates prospect update, we take a look at second baseman Termarr Johnson, the top prospect in Pittsburgh’s system.
The hype around this prospect has been immense since day one, as has been his $7.2 million signing bonus, and Johnson is working his way up to being one of the top interior infielders in all of baseball. Graduating from Mays High School in Atlanta Georgia, Johnson came on a lot of teams radars following his senior season, for his batting prowess against top competition and defensive fundamentals at both shortstop and second.
Termarr Johnson’s first High-A hit! pic.twitter.com/D8JCcYuGYX— Milb Central (@milb_central) August 5, 2023
Pittsburgh drafted Johnson with the fourth overall pick in 2022, where he was then assigned to the FCL Pirates before eventually moving up to low-A Bradenton. Seeing only 23 games in his first year offered a glimpse at what pro ball was like, and Johnson showed why he was taken so high in the draft. The raw power he possesses for someone of his size and stature is incredible, as he has a very natural feel for hitting the ball. His speed also compliments him well as a baserunner, though he has not been heavily involved in stealing bases.
Johnson was a non roster invitee to Spring Training this year, but exited early following an injury, and did not see any playing time in the Spring games. On August first he was assigned to the high-A Greensboro Grasshoppers.
Johnson through 80 games this season has 61 runs, 63 hits, 44 RBIs and 13 homeruns. A small sample size, sure, but he has clearly shown an ability to adapt to professional pitchers and make a name for himself as one of the top prospects in baseball. He has also shown strong defensive skills, with the versatility and athleticism to play both second and short, but the Pirates likely see him playing the former.
Expected to make his pro debut in 2025, Johnson is a must have for the Pirates, as that side of the infield has some question marks moving forward. Assuming Oneil Cruz stays in the field, he has a home at shortstop, but second base is left without a consistent figure to fill that void. Johnson is going to be that player, and with some time under his belt, he could develop into one of the best ever for Pittsburgh at that position.