In last year’s draft, the Florida Gators produced top quality players; pitchers A.J. Puk and Dane Dunning were selected in the first round, and three other players were picked on the opening night of the draft. However, this year’s draft may boast the best that the Gators have to offer: right-handed pitcher Alex Faedo.
Alex Faedo 2017 MLB Draft Profile
Alex Faedo is a 6’5″, 225-pound right-handed pitcher who has mastered college hitters since arriving in Gainesville. His dominance began in his sophomore season, where he produced a 13-3 record in seventeen starts, with a 3.18 ERA and a 133/21 K/BB ratio in 104.2 innings pitched. Surgeries on both of his knees sidelined him this fall, resulting in a slow start to the 2017 season. Now healthy, he’s bounced back, posting a 7-2 record in sixteen starts, and a 2.70 ERA along with a 1.15 WHIP in 103.1 innings.
Faedo boasts two elite pitches: a fastball and slider. His fastball sits between 92-95 MPH with nice cutting action. He consistently generates swing-and-misses with it. His slider is the best of the college draft class. It clocks between 86-88 MPH with serious bite, and he used it as his out pitch effectively. He also throws a low-80s changeup, though seldom uses it.
His delivery looks like he’s pitching exclusively from the stretch, with a three-quarters arm slot. Faedo wastes no time on the mound and consistently delivers right at the plate.
To state bluntly, there is nothing more for Faedo to prove at the college level. He’s started at Florida since his freshman year, producing a 26-6 record in 45 starts. He has proven himself against top collegiate talent and as part of the U.S. National team. Whoever drafts Faedo is getting a 21-year-old with advanced maturity who knows how to pitch.
Faedo has few weaknesses, mostly stemming from the minor surgeries on his knees. It took longer than expected for him to get back to full health, which resulted in his slow start this season.
Any other mention of a weakness is quibbling. His mechanics are somewhat twitchy and his stuff isn’t overpowering, but he’s consistent with the command of his pitches. He’s also not as athletic as most pitchers in the draft class, but his delivery begins in an athletic position and he doesn’t need to add to his frame.
Faedo is one of the top college arms in the draft when all is said and done and projects as a top-ten selection on June 12.