Top-100 Prospect Tyler Black Debuts for Brewers

Just Baseball's No. 72 overall prospect Tyler Black forced his way onto the Brewers roster with a dominant showing at Triple-A.

Tyler Black of the Milwaukee Brewers is greeted in the dugout after scoring a run in the third inning during the 2024 Spring Breakout Game between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Kansas City Royals at Surprise Stadium.
SURPRISE, - MARCH 17: Tyler Black #20 of the Milwaukee Brewers is greeted in the dugout after scoring a run in the third inning during the 2024 Spring Breakout Game between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Kansas City Royals at Surprise Stadium on Sunday, March 17, 2024 in Surprise, Arizona. (Photo by Zac BonDurant/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

It’s common for young players to struggle after a promotion. Even the most talented prospects often need some time to adjust to a new level of competition. Tyler Black seems to be the exception.

The 23-year-old has only gotten better with every step up the MiLB ladder. Selected in Competitive Balance Round A of the 2021 MLB draft, Black struggled in his first year of professional ball. He hit just .222 with a .660 OPS in 23 games with the Low-A Carolina Mudcats.

The next year, however, he came into his own. Playing for the High-A Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, Black batted .281 with an .831 OPS over 64 games. He nearly cut his strikeout rate in half without sacrificing walks, and his power numbers were way up.

Black made his way to Double-A in 2023, and he continued to improve. He started striking out a little more often, but his power output shot through the roof. In 84 games with the Biloxi Shuckers, he had 38 extra-base hits, including 14 home runs and eight triples.

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After a midseason promotion to Triple-A, Black maintained his power while cutting down his strikeouts. He posted a .942 OPS and a 13.3% strikeout rate in 39 games over the final two months of the 2023 season.

Unfortunately, Black faltered for what felt like the first time this spring, batting just .242/.342/.242 in 13 Cactus League games. He had an outside chance to earn a spot on the Milwaukee Brewers’ Opening Day roster, but his slow start meant he’d be heading back to the Nashville Sounds instead.

Yet, from day one of the minor league season, Black was angling for another promotion. He reached base in all but five of his first 25 games. His 30 hits and 20 runs scored were tied for fifth in the International League. He drew 13 walks and struck out only 16 times.

Black looked every bit as good as he did down the stretch last season. He was ready for his next challenge.

The Brewers certainly thought so.

On Tuesday afternoon, the Brewers selected Black from Triple-A. They optioned Owen Miller to Nashville and transferred Wade Miley to the 60-day IL to make room on the 26 and 40-man rosters, respectively.

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On Tuesday night, Black made his MLB debut, coming on as a pinch-runner for DH Gary Sánchez in the bottom of the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays. In front of a home crowd at American Family Field, he went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored.

The Brewers are looking strong in 2024, thanks in large part to an offense that ranks third in the NL in OPS and wRC+. However, their bats have slowed down considerably following a hot start. After hitting 23 home runs and scoring 6.5 runs per game over the first 14 games of the season, they hit just 12 homers and averaged 3.6 runs per contest over the next couple of weeks.

The offense is reeling without leader Christian Yelich, while double-play duo Brice Turang and Willy Adames have come back down to earth after a phenomenal performance over the first two weeks of the year.

Yet, the Brew Crew came alive again last night, scoring eight runs against the Rays.

Tyler Black is facing his toughest challenge yet. The difference between Triple-A pitching and MLB pitching is stark, to say the least. However, if he can make another quick adjustment – and he’s certainly off to a good start – his bat could be just the shot in the arm this Brewers lineup needs.

Entering the year, Tyler Black ranked sixth among Brewers prospects and No. 72 overall on Just Baseball’s Top 100 Prospects list. For more on the latest Brewers prospect to make his MLB debut, here is what Aram Leighton had to say about Black on our preseason rankings:

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72. Tyler Black – 3B – Milwaukee Brewers

Height/Weight: 5’10″, 190 | Bat/Throw: L/R | 1st Round (33) – 2021 (MIL) | ETA: 2024


A bat-first prospect, the Brewers have tried to find a defensive home for the former first-rounder to little avail, but his impressive ability at the plate continues to carry him.


Black utilizes a big leg kick to get into his lower half, but similar to Zach Neto, it is something that he has done for so long that it does not disrupt his timing. He walked nearly twice as much as he struck out in his collegiate career at Wright State, and struck out just 15.5% of the time in High-A during his first full pro season in 2022.

After missing time with an injury last season, Black returned looking stronger, and the results could be seen in the batted ball data. Black has seen his 90th percentile exit velocity jump by 4 MPH while upping his home run total of four in 2022 (64 games) to 18 in 2023 (123 games).

With the added power has come a bit more whiff for Black, but the feel for the barrel that scouts fell in love with ahead of the 2021 MLB Draft is still there. Running a chase rate of just 18%, he is also an extremely patient hitter who will draw plenty of walks.

While the Brewers Double-A affiliate in Biloxi is a hitter-friendly park, the big jump in exit velocity is encouraging for Black’s power outlook, and he has also slashed his ground ball rate by 11% in 2023. Black’s power flashes above average to his pull side and he leverages his hitter’s counts well to pick his spots to try to do damage.

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A sneaky plus runner, Black has really blossomed as a base stealer, becoming a consistent threat to run. After stealing 13 bases in 64 High-A games in 2022, Black stole 47 bases in 84 Double-A games during the 2023 season. 

That athleticism has not quite translated into the field, where Black is still trying to find his defensive home. He mostly played second base in his first pro season before getting some run in center field, where he unfortunately fractured his scapula laying out for a fly ball.

The Brewers now have Black playing third base. His actions have improved some since he was drafted, but his arm is fringy at best. Though it helps that he has some familiarity with multiple spots, Black will likely grade out as a below-average defender wherever the Brewers stick him and could wind up spending some time at first base.


Black’s jump in power paired with a good feel for the barrel and great approach give him a strong offensive profile. His ability on the base paths helps provide some value beyond the bat, but the lack of a defensive home is somewhat limiting. With his plus speed, it is worth wondering if he could get by in left, even with a weaker arm. 

The solid blend of above-average hit and improved power should make Black a big league bat with enough offensive upside to be an above-average regular despite his defensive shortcomings.