Division I baseball has made a home out of Omaha, Nebraska. Vanderbilt University baseball has done the same in recent years. Good fastball feel and strong secondary pitches makes Kyle Wright 2017 MLB Draft ready. Vanderbilt is going to need him to reach Omaha before he leaves.
Kyle Wright 2017 MLB Draft Profile
College Pitchers are often viewed as a safe bet. Kyle Wright has shown he isn’t exactly that. With a bit of work he will sit well at the top of a rotation for a long time. His inconsistencies are not a worry to most teams right now. They see the stuff he brings, and that’s all the sales pitch he needs.
— Vanderbilt Baseball (@VandyBaseball) June 2, 2017
A pitcher out of Huntsville, Alabama, Wright, 21, was a top draft prospect back in 2014 when his was coming out of high school. He went undrafted because of his intense desire to play for Vanderbilt University. He’s measured at 6’4″ and 220 pounds right now, having put on 40 pounds since high school. He spent his first year at the University in the bullpen. With a 1.23 ERA in 58.2 innings pitched, he was the go-to relief arm for the team.
His next two seasons, 2016 and 2017, Wright has been a starter. He’s shown some inconsistency in command and control. He’s also shown lights out ability. Those who don’t worry about the wavering in performance, like ESPN’s Kieth Law, see him as a top-five pick. In Law’s mind, he’s the top pick. He’s number three at MLB.com.
No doubt, teams are looking at his present plus fastball pairing well with two future plus secondary offerings. The fastball sits 90-93, running up to 97 when he reaches for it. His curveball is his best secondary, flashing plus in the future. He also throws an 80-85 MPH slider to right-handed batters with future above average potential, possibly plus. He’as also recently picked up a changeup.
When Wright gets his secondaries working, and a consistent fastball velocity, he’s the pitcher MLB scouts want in the top of the draft. He works his pitches well together, and is competent with four separate pitches. This gives him some options on the mound which wont limit him in how he approaches a batter.
His walk rate right now is 2.71 per nine innings. His strike out rate sits at 10.44 per nine. Wright has managed to increase his K/BB ratio every season in college as he continues to learn more about himself and his pitches. Watch for this trend to continue as a pro.
Command and control. His delivery is currently deemed average while showing good arm action. The command and control probably lags due to the current state of his offerings. Polishing his pitches and cleaning up his mechanics with some time around professional coaches will bring his C&C up to at least average.
His numbers as a starter have fluctuated all season. Right now, Wright has thrown his way to a 2.91 ERA. The beginning of the season wasn’t electric enough to keep scouts talking about his potential 1/1 pick. He’s cleared it up through the year, and we see his stock rise again as a result.
If he develops close to his projections, he’ll make a solid mid-rotation arm. If he can improve his secondaries and command each of his four pitches, he’ll be the the top-rotation pitcher as he’s been talked about.