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Analyzing Amateur Baseball Talent as it pertains to the MLB Draft

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College Notes 3-11-11

In my third consecutive week I decided to focus on an emerging left-handed pitcher from the college ranks, with Oregon’s Tyler Anderson following Adam Conley and Andrew Chafin. I focused solely on Anderson, and later Scott McGough, in the first game of the Ducks’ series with BYU.

Tyler Anderson

Aside from watching some third-party footage of Anderson, this was my first chance to see him pitch. I really had a different picture painted of his style and abilities, which is why it is always important to me to try and watch any player perform to get a sense of what they’re all about, and more importantly, what they could become at the next level.

His size is evident, with a tall and lean build with long legs and some strength. There is some evident herk and jerk to his delivery in which he twists his lower plant leg/ankle/foot prior to planting. Out of the windup he holds his glove on his left chest, which isn’t really of substance other than most usually hold their glove either in the center of their chest or on their glove-hand side.

It took Anderson a couple of innings to get in sync. His arm speed looked to be slower in the early innings than it did later on, and he had a stretch between the fourth and fifth innings in which he struck out five batters in a row. Overall he struck out 12 batters in eight innings, with nine of those coming in innings four through eight, evidence of him maintaining his velocity and overall effectiveness deep into the game. I was worried in the early innings that his pitch count may creep up too high too quickly, but he tossed only 102 pitches through seven.

His fastball gets in on hitters quickly, and there is some run to his fastball at times that appears to tail away from right-handed batters. He has a really sharp slider, at least when he started to get it over, that dives in and down on right-handed hitters.

Anderson is evidently confident on the mound, sometimes a little on the emotional side, and while he has good stuff, he can struggle with his control, or at least he did on this day. However, that did allow him to be a little effectively wild at times, but at the same time he can be hittable. His slider is a wipeout pitch down in the dirt, and there were a couple of instances in which he came high with his fastball to record a swinging punchout.

His pickoff move is what you would expect from a lefty, committing to home late in his delivery out of the stretch that allows him to hold runners on well at first base. He had a couple of opportunities to field the ball from the mound, and while he didn’t execute all of them perfectly, he showed to have pretty quick reactions and put himself in a good position to field the ball after his delivery.

Anderson entered the spring as a potential first-round pick, but a deep draft class and the emergence of left-handed pitchers such as Adam Conley, Andrew Chafin and even Ryan Carpenter would give me a hard time to choose between the four if I had such a choice.

Scott McGough

I had McGough (pronounced McGuff) rated as the sixth-best prospect in the Northwoods League the summer after his freshman year in college. Most of the praise at the time centered on his loose, athletic frame and easy arm strength that produced 92-94 fastballs.

The report on his body and arm speed remain the same, as it’s easy to see why he excelled as an infielder and actually began his career at Oregon as a two-way performer. Reports indicate that he still throws in the low-90s with the ability to touch 93-94, and he has also done a nice job tightening up his slider which is thrown with the exact same arm speed and angle as his fastball. His fastball explodes out of his hand given his loose arm, but the pitch can be fairly straight, making it hittable. He was always around the zone, but he did fall off hard to the first base side of the diamond, an indication that he may throw across his body some.

There has been some talk of him assuming a starting role, but he continues to be used exclusively as a reliever. He got into some trouble in this game, and has started the season rather slowly overall. He’s been pitching in the same range velocity-wise for a couple of years now, meaning that is likely where he will continue to pitch moving forward. He doesn’t have the largest of stature, but he has a good two-pitch mix to continue to serve as a short reliever, although a 91-94 straight fastball isn’t exactly over-powering at the next level. Meaning, he probably profiles best as a set-up man and not as a prototypical closer.

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Dandy Dozen

SP
Andrew Gagnon Well rounded RHP w/ good size, repertoire
SP
Erik Johnson Big bodied RHP with good FB/CB combo
SP
Deshorn Lake Live-armed RHP with sharp breaking ball
CL
Nick Maronde Lived-armed LHP tough to catch up to
C
Nick Delmonico May not be C long-term, big body, LH bat
1B
Zach Wilson Aggressive hitter can put sting in ball
IF
Sean Trent Well built hitter with pop, speed, arm
3B
Dante Bichette, Jr. Clone of father with big build, power
SS
Austin Nola Steady D' at shortstop, improving strength
OF
Nick Martini Good all around player with patient eye
OF
Shon Carson Shorter, well built 2-sport speedster
OF
Granden Goetzman Fast riser w/ exciting power/speed combo

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