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Early impressions from the first day of the Perfect Game showcase

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Putting down some early thoughts from the first day about the players who were showcasing their talents at the Perfect Game National Showcase at Chase Field.

Jack Sommers previewed the Perfect Game showcase. There were plenty of scouts there at the Showcase, with the Padres and Cubs being represented with likely more sitting in the stands behind home plate. One thing to notice was the sheer amount of video cameras, I must have seen about 30 of them there, which comes as no surprise. Every little bit of data gets measured: velocity, home to first time, catcher pop times, pitcher delivery time with a runner at 1st, etc.

In these type showcases where batters only get a single look at the pitchers, it’s easier for the pitching to stand out. However there was a few notable hitting moments in the two showcase games.

  • Catcher Corey Collins didn’t rank high on the list, in fact not even making the Top 64 but he showcased potential power down the road with an impressive batting practice showing, to which Jack described as loud sounds off the bat, and driving a ball halfway up the fence in right field for a triple. The catcher is listed at 6’3” 208 and is built like a power hitter, so not surprised. He also threw out a basestealer despite the runner his pitcher being slow to the plate with a money throw on the base the half inning before smashing a ball off the fence.
  • Outfielder Chase Davis, who ranked 12th and is a University of Arizona commit, ripped a double down the right field line. He’s a guy who could potential be a factor with the Diamondbacks’ first two picks in the draft next year as they’ll likely be sitting around 15-20 in the first round and then 36-40 with their Competitive Balance A pick.
  • Shortstop prospect Masyn Winn was a terror on the basepaths, I’ll see if someone has a 60 time written down potentially but I have to imagine it’s in the 6.3-6.4 range. I believe he stole 4 bases in the first game including one where he was picked off first and outran the throw to second. I didn’t get to see him hit much so I really couldn’t tell you if he fits the Marte/Escobar mold of hitter. He definitely fits the HT/WT profile although he’s a right-handed bat.

Of course the focus was mostly on the pitching, there were some electric arms. Most of the pitchers were able to push well into the 90s with their fastball velocity and showcase a potential plus offspeed pitch. Here were some of the impressions I got from the pitchers.

  • Liam Norris: FB 90-92 (T92), 11/5 curve 77-79, change-up with about 10 MPH off the fastball. Already filled out at 6’2” 215, so there isn’t much development there. Got swings and misses when the fastball was up, but couldn’t land it in the zone to get ahead.
  • Jarred Kelly: FB 94-97 (T97) and had trouble commanding it. Despite his high ranking, he seems like a long term project (5+ years) for even the best farm systems.
  • Nate Savino: FB 93-95 (T95), slider 76-78 (not quite sure what type of breaking we have). Savino was the first pitcher to showcase any sort of precise command and had the two Padres scouts sitting to my right bickering about writing up on him. Fastball command was on point and kept landing the slider on the zone to baffle hitters. I see him as a potential target for the Dbacks in the 1st and CBA round.
  • Daxton Fulton: FB 90-92 (T92), SL 78-80, CH 80-82. Fulton stands at 6’6” 220 with perhaps about 10 pounds to add to his wiry frame. His advanced offspeed stuff kept getting hitters to chase for whiffs or weak contact. He’s another guy who could be on the radar for R1/CBA.
  • Storm Hierholzer: FB 90-93 (T93), SL 78-80. Threw out of a stretch delivery and has a very advanced feel for a slider (potential plus pitch), which allowed him to attack up with the fastball for swings while landing the slider in the zone for called strikes.
  • Nate Wohlgemuth: FB 92-95 (T95), CB 75-77, CH 82-85. Wohlgemuth showcased the ability to command three pitches pretty effectively. He is a bit at a disadvantage being listed at 5’11”, which could cause him to slip out of the draft next year despite the potential for three above average pitches.
  • Jared Jones: FB 94-97, SL 87. Out of all the pitchers in the showcase, he had the best raw stuff which is probably why he was the highest ranked pitcher there. Stuff did drop a bit in his 2nd inning of work, which is probably the first thing any organization will have to work on after picking him up. He’s near the high-end of possible arms for the Dbacks, in case there is a run on college arms as well as position players overall. Facing the #2 ranked player in the event in Dylan Crews, he blew him away on 4 pitches (96 at the letters for Strike 3 after jumping up 0-2).
  • Carson Montgomery: FB 93-95, SL 80-82. I didn’t see many offspeed pitches from him although he was able to get his fastball on top of hitters. The delivery is a bit of a concern, it’s a fast tempo, high effort delivery although he repeats it pretty well.