After looking at the New York-Penn League position players in Part 1 of this series, I take a step back and provide my scouting notes on many of the arms on display in last week’s All-Star contest. Scouting arms in an exhibition setting can be difficult as most pitchers amp up and show max stuff in a one-inning burst, but there is still valuable information to be obtained.
Jonathon Crawford, RHP, Detroit Tigers (Connecticut)
Looks every bit the part of a first rounder; strong durable frame despite being just 6-foot-1; attacked with everything; FB sat 93-94; had 96-98 when he wanted/needed it; FB was explosive and nearly unhittable; SL 85-88 and best secondary pitch of the night; SL was very sharp with incredibly hard two-plane break; two easy plus pitches that both flashed in 7 range; didn’t show CH; a little effort to delivery; arm slot and landing foot were inconsistent; control was spotty; mid-rotation potential but FB-SL will play in late innings as backup.
Sergio Gomez, RHP, Boston Red Sox (Lowell)
Rail-thin body; very projectable but I question how much mass he’ll add; easy, loose arm; needs to slow down throughout delivery; gets out of sync pretty easily; lacks balance; FB 88-90, T91; lacked control; good plane; CB 73-78 with big, slow 12-6 break; can see CB out of the hand; needs more deception; CH 74-75 with good arm speed; reliever profile.
Luis Lugo, LHP, Cleveland Indians (Mahoning Valley)
Good frame; plenty of projection; really like the body; high-3/4 slot; FB 86-89, T91; willingly adds and subtracts from FB; showed ability to work up and down ladder; lacked side-to-side command of FB; CB 71-72 with occasional good break; CH 77; didn’t see CH enough to rate; needs overall consistency; very young; intriguing arm.
Joe Gunkel, RHP, Boston Red Sox (Lowell)
One of the big surprises of the night; tall and thin with lots of arms and legs; low-slot slinger; FB 92-94 with life; SL 83-85 with single-plane saucer break; not sharp but effective; two-pitch reliever long term; probably mid relief.
Jimmy Yacabonis, RHP, Baltimore Orioles (Aberdeen)
Max-effort reliever; good body with strength in upper and lower halves; hard sinking FB sat 92-93; showed occasional run as well; FB can miss bats at this level and will induce weak contact at higher levels; CH 77-78 with good arm speed and natural sink; solid-average pitch on the night; SL 83-84 and easily worst pitch; SL is spinner that was squared twice in one inning; well below-average pitch; seventh-inning ceiling.
Zac Reininger, RHP, Detroit Tigers (Connecticut)
Interesting arm; lanky kid with longs arms and legs; physically reminds me of Bronson Arroyo; has leg kick approaching Arroyo as well; FB 90-91, T92; no fear with FB; likes to challenge and pounds strike zone; can add and subtract; upper-70s SL; mid-70s CB with good shape and more vertical element than SL; CB dropped to 69 at one point; flashed CH as well; mixes pitches very well; swingman type.
Miller Diaz, RHP, New York Mets (Brooklyn)
Stocky body; came out firing; FB 93-94 with life; elevated too much for my taste, particularly without good plane; SPL 85-87 with arm-side movement and some sink; quality second pitch; SL 83-84 with short, sharp break; mixed all three but relied more heavily on split; compact delivery; maintains velo on all pitches in stretch; FB-SPL will work better in bullpen.
Ryan Newell, RHP, Miami Marlins (Batavia)
Stocky guy; very quick arm; max effort; delivery is very inconsistent; lacks anything resembling control; FB 91-93 without much life; didn’t show same velo as observed during amateur days; CB 75-77 with 12-to-6 break; CB flashes 5+ but gave it away with slow arm at times; pure reliever profile; probably seventh-inning ceiling with return of prior velo.
Michael Feliz, RHP, Houston Astros (Tri-City)
Electric; tall and projectable; very high waist; long arms and legs; massive hands; arm action is clean; works uphill at times by leaning back toward 2B and doesn’t always recover; command and control lag; don’t get comfortable in the box with him; FB easy 93-94; reached for 96-97 on multiple pitches; didn’t show more effort for extra velo; FB has good tail; low-80s SL with bite; SL lacks consistency; didn’t show CH in exhibition setting; high-ceiling arm; could max as no. 3 starter with CH and control development.
Robert Gsellman, RHP, New York Mets (Brooklyn)
Good size; very simple delivery; shows good coordination throughout delivery; repeats well; FB 90-92, T94; FB shows swing-back action; difficult to barrel; CB 77-81 with hard break; good pitch with 5+ potential as he gains consistency; varies speed of CB well; sells it; middle reliever.
Andrew Walter, RHP, Houston Astros (Tri-City)
Big frame; broad shoulders; MLB physicality; works very fast on the mound; mixes three pitches well; seems comfortable with all three pitches; FB 92-93; some life; CH 83-84; shows lots of arm-side movement on CH; CB 77-78; good vertical break; all three pitches show as solid-average at times; big surprise for undrafted free agent; small window for success; potential swingman or no. 5 in perfect world.
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