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2019 Draft Prospect Preview: Quinn Priester

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Considered by many to be the best prep arm in the draft, many feel he will be there for the taking at #16 if the Diamondbacks decide they want him.

Quinn Priester

Cary-Grove (IL) HS
B/T: R/R
Height/Weight: 6’ 03”, 198 lbs
Birth Date: 09/15/2000
College Commitment: Texas Christian
FB- 60(65) Curveball- 60(60) Changeup- 50 (55) Control- 50 (50) Overall- 50

There are many who are looking at Quinn Priester as the number one prep arm in this year’s draft. While he does not have quite the same raw stuff as Allan does, Priester’s control is considerably better. Furthermore, Priester’s mechanics raise less of a concern than Allan’s do .Priester is essentially a self-taught pitcher, and knows what he’s doing on the mound. Priester developed his repertoire and mechanics through trial and error both in bullpen throwing and then on the mound during game activity. A common concern regarding prep pitchers from the Midwest is that it typically takes them longer to peak than those from warmer weather states, simply because they don’t pitch enough innings. However, this may be less of a concern for Priester, because he’s already so advanced. Given how high he has risen up the boards of late, it would seem that scouts are coming around on him as the draft draws nearer. While not long ago, Priester was ranked near #50 on many lists, Priester has climbed up to a new resting spot around #20 on most boards now.

Priester has a methodical, easy delivery with a low, balanced finish and a fastball that sits in the low 90s, touching 95 mph this summer. Priester gets impressive running action on his fastball, and he’s also shown solid feel for a recently introduced two-seam fastball which has quickly developed into a true out pitch for him. He throws an upper-70s curveball with 11-to-5 shape and solid depth that routinely registered a spin rate between 2,400 and 2,500 rpm at the Area Code Games this summer.

In 2019, Priester has pitched in 27 games thus far and is running a 1.18 ERA for the Cary-Grove Trojans, who are currently 19-12 this season.

In 41.2 innings-pitched, Priester has 64 strikeouts and is holding opponents to a .155 batting average and registering six wins.

In 2017, as a junior, the stats are relatively similar with Priester finishing the campaign with an exact 1.00 ERA, though in only 14 innings pitched. In those 14 frames, Priester struck out 18 batters.

Below are Priester’s career numbers with Cary-Grove

  • 88.1 IP
  • 1.11 ERA
  • 127 K
  • 10 wins
  • .154 BAA

Outlook: As noted above, Priester is regarded by many as the top prep arm in the draft. He is also regarded as one of the top-five right handed pitchers in the draft. Having climbed to such a position without much in the way of formal training, plenty of teams may become enamored with just what might be possible if they get him in front of professional pitching coaches. As a prep arm, there will be considerable time before he would reach the majors, but he could be a solid upper-half of the rotation arm with three plus offerings if he makes it.

Modern Comp: Touki Toussaint

Ceiling: Anibal Sanchez

Floor: Jesse Chavez

This one was recorded earlier this month.

The Takeaway: Despite being one of the two best prep arms in the draft, Priester is regularly mocked to go off the board around #20. This is due to a combination of factors. There are some who are concerned about signability. The lower he drops, the greater the possibility he simply opts to honor his commitment to Texas Christian. Another factor is that, prep arms just aren’t the strength of this draft. There are a number of college bats in this year’s draft that simply refuse to be ignored, pushing prep talents without elite level talent down the board some. With the size of their bonus pool, the Diamondbacks should have plenty available to lure Priester away from college if they decide they like him. However, unless he is their top target, it may be worth rolling the dice to see if he falls to #26 rather than spending the #16 pick on him. If he falls to #26, the amount over slot the Diamondbacks would have to pay would probably be higher, but this would allow them a better shot at other, more difficult targets higher up on the board.