The Oakland Athletics took something of a risk during the first round of the 2018 MLB Draft. It’s not because the player is viewed as a gigantic project anything, it’s just that there was no guarantee that Kyler Murray would end up playing baseball.
That’s because while Murray is a tremendous outfielder, he’s no slouch on the gridiron, either. In fact, calling him “no slouch” sells him short: The former five-star recruit might be the best high school quarterback in the history of Texas football, as he accrued more than 14,000 total yards, 186 total touchdowns, and a 42-0 record as a starting signal caller. After a career at Texas A&M that went about as well as every post-Johnny Manziel quarterback’s career went with the Aggies, Murray transferred to Oklahoma, where he sat for two years (one as an NCAA-mandated redshirt season) behind Baker Mayfield.
His talent as a quarterback is undeniable, as evidenced by the fact that he has stepped in for Mayfield in a big way, leading the Sooners to a 3-0 mark with an 8:1 TD:INT ratio and the sixth-best passer rating in the sport. Quarterbacks thrive in Lincoln Riley’s offense, and Murray has been the latest example of this.
However, for how good he is at football, he can also do ludicrous stuff like this on the diamond:
Murray can straight up mash a baseball, as evidenced by the 10 dingers he hit for the Sooners last year. He had a batting average just below .300 and an OPS of .954, which raises the eyebrows of at least one scout.
“He can fly, he can throw, he can steal bases, he has plus bat speed and he makes good contact,” a National League executive told MLB.com about Murray. “He’s not that raw at the plate. He’s got a line-drive stroke with some power. I think he’s got a chance to be a true five-tool guy; it’s just a matter of whether he’s going to play the game or not.”