3/4 arm slot; evenly filled out body; easy, repeatable delivery; smooth and efficient; uses frame to create leverage and plane; gets on top of the ball; throws downhill; can drift with feet during finish; quick to plate - 1.29-1.34 out of stretch.
Bowie Baysox (AA, Orioles)
50; 4th/5th starter
Fringe-average command; showed pitchability with offering - tried to work both sides of the plate; not afraid to pitch inside against right-handed batters; lacks strong movement - demonstrated occasional arm-side tail; left pitch up and in middle of the plate too much; very flat when elevated; offering will need to be consistently spotted down around the knees and on the corners; needs to finesse the strike zone; will not overpower hitters and miss bats frequently; must pick spots when elevating.
Solid-average command; consistently threw for strikes; tilt and depth to offering, but not presently a hard biter; showed more sweeping action; lack of hard break off the table enables batters to wait on pitch and get the barrel on well spotted ones; capable of consistently executing pitch; room for growth - showed feel for creating snap with wrist; will need to tighten up to miss bats at the major league level.
Below-average command; left up in zone often; lacked finish causing pitch to float and hang in the strike zone; on the firm side; action more like a fastball pitcher is taking something off of; willing to throw pitch in sequences; at times got deliberate with delivery, tipping that it was coming; can throw with appropriate arm-speed and create deception.
While Rodriguez's stuff was bland in this outing, I saw some room for growth with his arsenal and an understanding of the fundamentals behind executing his craft. The lefty was willing to work both sides of the plate with his fastball, along with showing no fear in trying to get the pitch up under right-handed hitters' hands. There was a lack of execution, however, especially in the 3rd inning of the outing. It was compounded by Rodriguez losing his rhythm, and what seemed to be some focus in slowing the game down. The pitcher went into an ultra-attack mode, where he was trying to hard to force the execution of his pitches and it lead to a loss of control over the outing.
Rodriguez's fastball is the type that is best served being thrown in the lower tier of the strike zone and on the corners. The pitcher needs work improving the consistency of his fastball command to limit hard contact and continue to progress through the upper minors. There's a fine line with the pitch. Presently, neither of his secondary offerings are of the bat missing variety. I saw his slider as having the best potential to progress towards this level. Rodriguez feels the pitch well and shows the ability to throw it for strikes. The lack of hard bite is a hurdle now for getting opposing batters to commit early to the pitch and swing over the top of it. The way he threw the pitch lead me to believe it can tighten up a bit more with further repetition over the next year or so. The changeup can be a serviceable offering for him in the long-run, but I didn't see the feel for it getting past an average offering.
Overall, this isn't a flashy arm or one with top shelf stuff. I did like the way Rodriguez went about trying to execute his craft. The lefty had an idea of who he is as a pitcher. But, there are rough edges here and limitations when laying in the present stuff against major-league hitters. His body language and overall demeanor left me with the impression that the mind is in the right place to make progress, and more repetition will drive future growth to reach the projection.