Written by: Jake Tillinghast
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1st Round: RHP Mick Abel – Jesuit HS (OR)
B/T: R/R – HT: 6’5″ WT” 190 lbs – ETA: 2024
|55 / 70||40 / 60||30 / 45||40 / 60||45 / 60||45+|
Right up there as the best Prep pitcher in the class with Nick Bitsko and Jared Kelley. The Phillies decided Abel was the best of the bunch, and selected him with the 15th overall pick.
I love the arm, how can you not. Has a repeatable delivery and is able to consistently find his release point and arm slot. A 4 pitch mix, 3 that show plus ability and the 4th being slightly below average, but has ever chance to grow into a 4th above average pitch with his advanced feel for pitching.
And as good as he is and the stuff already shows, there is room to get even better as he fills into his 6’5″ frame, as he only weighs 190lbs, and will likely see velocity increase as he fills out, which is a scary thought. Likely sitting mid-upper 90s when he fully matures.
Rapsodo posted the video above on draft night of a session with Abel, touching 99 MPH w/ 2660 RPM well above the MLB Avg of 2250.. So maybe that velo is already on the way, maybe it still needs time to show up in game consistently, nevertheless, it is in there, and it is coming.
For reference, Gerrit Cole averaged 2530 RPM on the FB in 2019.. Granted this was 1 pitch, and doesn’t prove he can do this consistently or even in a game setting like Cole did with that average FB RPM. But with Abel’s advanced pitching approach, and want to be great, and consistently work on his craft, I see little doubt his will reach his true potential. And you don’t hear that often with prep right handed pitchers to often..
Right now, the FB sits 93-95 touches 97 MPH and most recently 99 MPH as I previously mentioned above with nice arm side run and flashing some natural cut to lefties at times when coming in on them.
The slider is his 2nd best pitch.It has really hard late break and good feel for the pitch. Consistently is able to repeat his arm slot and get that hard late break away from righties and be a strikeout pitch for him. And shows good command of the pitch overall, something that is pretty rare for prep pitchers. Most have trouble consistently being able to spin breaking balls, and locate them with consistency. Abel does a fairly good job of this. And its impressive to watch
As good as the Slider is, the Change up flashes just as much upside. With strong vertical drop to it that pairs well with the repertoire of that hard FB up in the zone, and a CH that works great North/South with that pitch. And the SL comes in as just another angle and , and is just another plus pitch.
The is his “Project” pitch if you will, but shows some nice depth and gives hitters just another look and something to put in the back of their heads to get him off the FB even more. Making him that much more lethal.
3rd Round: SS Casey Martin – Arkansas
B/T: R/R – HT: 5’11” WT” 175 lbs – ETA: 2023
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Casey is an exiting payer who plays at 120% all the time, with a lot of energy. Putting a lot of pressure on defenses with his game changing speed, and aggressiveness on the base paths with the ball in play.
Whole lot of swing and miss here. All the way up at 27% K rate during his career at Arkansas. Yeah strikeouts are apart of the game now, but as a potential 2nd round pick like he was looked at heading into draft day, you expect a bit in that department, showing an ability to hit college pitching, because he will face even better guys at the next level.
The the Swing gets a bit long at times, and pull happy. Looking to get the ball in the air, and not really worried about shortening up his swing with 2 strikes, vs velocity, spin, nothing, just selling out for power.
Most of that power goes to pull side, but flashes enough strength to reach the seats out to CF fairly often. As he moves into the wood I think that power to CF will show on occasion, but less frequently, and moving into a more or less dead pull hitter, which hurts his value a tad. If he can find a way to make a bit more contact and cut the swing down a tad, it would not only benefit his overall game, and HIT Tool, it would allow him to tap more into that RAW PWR he has. RAW PWR is great, but if you aren’t touching the ball, it cant exactly go that far.
Casey shows plus plus speed. 70 grade. Although it hasn’t translated consistently to stolen bases, but does show up on the base paths when the ball is in play, and on his run times own the line. And again, puts so much pressure on defenses with his aggressiveness and game changing speed.
He makes a lot of errors at SS, personally I have a hard time seeing him stick there, and think will be a better fit at 2B, but has the necessary tools to be a fit in CF in my opinion. He has great range with his speed and gets strong 1st steps. The arm accuracy and ability to come in on the soft ground balls are my issues with his defense. But move him to the outfield, and he can get a bit more behind the throw and should be able to improve on that accuracy. 2B is the likeliest scenario in my opinion however as he would probably never turn into a plus defender out in CF
He has LOUD tools on offense from the RAW PWR to speed and if it clicks, can be a really exciting player, and a steal in the 3rd round for the Phillies. Just going to take some seasoning to iron out some of those swing and miss issues we touched on.
4th Round: RHP Carson Ragsdale – South Florida
B/T: R/R – HT: 6’8″ WT” 225 lbs – ETA: 2024
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This is an interesting one. BIG presence on the mound standing 6’8”. Missed 2019 with Tommy John. Has a very easy, clean and repeatable delivery, especially for being so tall. And fairly athletic, got some ABs while at South Florida and has some big RAW PWR, but we probably won’t be seeing too much of that anymore.
Transitioned into the starting rotation in 2020 from the bullpen and that put himself on the map as more than just a reliever.
Total in the 2020 season he made 4 starts, totaling 19 innings, and 37 Ks to 7 BBs. Showing a bit of improvement in control from his 2017 time in the pen. But still not having great command of his pitches. And then to increase his stock even more, the last start he was able to get in before the lock down he mowed down the Florida Gators in 4 IP with 2H 10K 1BB
The Fastball lives in the 91-95 range, and plays up with his size and reach, gets on hitters quick with the extension and reach from that frame.
The CB more of a 12/6 drop to it is his strikeout pitch, and a pretty good at that. He tunnels it very well as you can see in the video below, working his FB up and the big breaking 12/6 curveball off of it.
He has a Changeup but has not shown much potential at reaching league avg status with he pitch, arm speed slows a bit and doesn’t show much life or feel for the pitch.
Likely will end up as a reliever capable of going multiple innings if needed, and that will allow his stuff to play up being in shorter stints not needed to use his stuff 2 times through the order like he was as a Starting pitcher before the shutdown.
Has a lot of similarities to Dellin Betances – Doesn’t have the potential of Betances, but there are some similarities with the size, and 1-2 punch of the Fastball/Curveball.
5th Round: OF Baron Radcliff – Georgia Tech
B/T: L/R – HT: 6’4″ WT” 228 lbs – ETA: 2024
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Man… Baron Radcliffe is a really exciting player, loud tools and huge RAW PWR. He will take some time to develop in the minors though.
He has hit multiple 450+ Ft HRs, exit velocities over 110+ mph. As you see in the video above.. You can’t deny the PWR is legit. But can he tap into it consistently? That’s the question mark.
Big guy. 6’4” 228 lbs. The RAW PWR he possesses is just ridiculous. Legit plus plus RAW PWR, game PWR it shows up, but as we talked about earlier with Casey Martin, Radcliffe is at risk of seeing him K rate jump even higher, and PWR will be put to display less often. If he can find a bit more consistency with contact.. This has a chance to be one of the steals of the draft, but don’t think it will happen with him personally. He has a lot of work to do in that department shortening up his swing, and that could hurt his PWR potential.
For his size he is extremely athletic, being a former High School QB, and a good one at that, he needed it. But that athleticism has stayed with him on the baseball field. Quick on his feet, and the base paths showing good burst in the outfield in the gap and to the line covering some good ground out there.
But where you find problems are in the HIT tool that I have concerns with and a ton of swing and miss in his game with 34% K that you only imagine will continue to rise as he faces more advanced pitching.
He does still have a chance to carve out a role as a Power hitting OF/1B that has the ability to carry a team for a few weeks when he gets hot, he can take any pitcher deep to any part of the yard. It just not to often he puts that potential on display
Radcliffe has some 1B in his background so he could see time there. But with his athleticism, speed and arm that are all above average tools to work with.
Another big upside pick with a low floor from the Phillies. And one that tops of a very low floor high upside draft in general for the team.
I don’t mind this pick considering it was their last round pick, this is what you are looking for, loud tools that you can dream on and hope turn into something special. And He has those. From the game changing power ability to plus speed and strong arm
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