3/4 slot with slight drop and drive; prevents much downward plane on stuff; slight back turn to hitters; crossfire causes arm/body to have to work to reach inside corner to LHH/outside to RHH but did it often and with consistency; long arms and legs; long arm in back enables hitter to see it, lacking deception; good athlete; repeated well; overall delivery isn’t ideal but seems to make it work; excellent arm speed; late bloomer physically who’s adding strength and filling out frame; should be a durable body at full maturity.
Command: fringe-average present, future average. Movement: plus-plus; huge arm-side run and sink. Notes: monster fastball; easy 70-grade velocity; held through five innings in this look, working 94-96 in final frame; bat-breaking pitch that should induce groundballs; prefers heavy two-seam in on RHH, four-seam in on LHH; similar velo on both; easily throws strikes with pitch; across body delivery likely to prevent plus command, but it should be average.
Command: average present, future solid-average. Movement: matches two-seam movement with heavy fade and sink. Notes: present plus offering; room to become plus-plus with refined command; repeats arm slot and speed on offering exceptionally well; deceptive pitch with big life; used with confidence to both left- and right-handed hitters; showed in all counts; like fastball, swing-and-miss and groundball pitch.
Command: fringe-average present, future average. Movement: manipulates to vary velocity and break; sharp at 86-88 with slightly less length and good late depth. Notes: command was on inconsistent side in this look, but showed feel to pitch with it; manipulated velo and break; worked it in on lefties; flashed back-foot to LHH with two strikes; loose on occasion but flashed plus; more 5s than 6s in this look.
Other: Also shows occasional curveball at 82-84 mph; hard with good depth; showed three future plus and all for strikes; attacked hitters with aggressive approach within zone; got in on hands of LHH with all three offerings, which is surprising given his delivery; many crossfire guys struggle to reach that corner.
Overall: Butler improved as his first full season progressed and finished with a highly impressive six-start stint in Double-A, giving up just two runs on 13 hits in 27 2/3 innings. His stuff is nasty; nobody doubts that. It’s a power arsenal with huge life. His delivery isn’t ideal and leads some scouts to believe he profiles best in the bullpen––where I think he’d be a potential elite closer––but he seems to make it work enough to stick in a starting role. He repeated, got to both sides of the plate, should be durable, and showed a plenty deep repertoire. With his long arm in the back, Butler does show the ball to hitters and lacks much deception; that could make him somewhat hittable at the highest level. His plus-plus life and resulting ground-ball tendency could make up for that deficiency to some extent, though.