December 7, 2012
Scouting the Draft
College Right-Handed Pitchers
Today’s installment of Scouting the Draft looks at five collegiate right-handers with the chance to come off the board in the early rounds next June. As a reminder, the goal of this series is not to cover every name worth knowing for next June; we have plenty of time to bring you full reports on the top draft-eligible players for 2013 over the next seven months. This is meant to serve as an introduction to the draft class for those who have not yet begun to follow the action and to pool in one place a rundown of some of the top performances in the months leading up to the draft before we start parsing the class in more detail.
Jonathon Crawford | RHP | University of Florida
The Basics: 6-foot-1, 205-pounds; right/right profile; draft day age 21 years, seven months
Brings to the table: Front-end stuff, highlighted by a plus fastball that has a second gear. Crawford generally sits 92-94 mph with his fastball, topping 95/96, with arm-side life and bore. His slider is a second plus offering at its best, usually coming in between 82-85 mph with tilt and late bite. Crawford keeps a solid tempo and repeats his mechanics well, though the angles on his pitches can keep the ball on too hittable a path at times. He still lacks a consistent off-speed pitch but has made some progress with a change-up.
Made a name for himself when: He dominated the Gainesville Regional in June to the tune of a 98-pitch no-hitter against Bethune-Cookman in which he struck out five and walked just one. The Florida righty continued to deal with USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team, tossing 25 2/3 innings over six appearances and allowing just 14 hits while walking 11 and striking out 15. Crawford’s strikeout totals aren’t gaudy, but part of that can be explained by the fact that 20 of his innings came against a tough Cuba squad. The stats are solid, but the stuff and poise are what stood out most, solidifying Crawford’s spot among the top tier of college arms available this June.