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2014 MLB Draft Preview: Tyler Kolek Scouting Report

May 25, 2014 | by Michael Seff | Comments (1)
Tyler Kolek is going to be one of the top picks of the 2014 MLB Draft.
Tyler Kolek can really bring the heat. (Collegebaseballtoday.com)

Today we continue our coverage of the upcoming MLB 2014 Draft with a look Tyler Kolek, a Texas high school righty projected to go as high as No. 2 overall. The 18-year-old is considered the top high school arm in the draft.

Our Take

One of the first things you notice about Kolek is his mechanics (see video below). They are consistent but not particularly polished, especially the finish in his delivery. He comes across his body to the third base side of the mound, which makes you wonder if his command could be hindered. Kolek’s stuff is potentially dominant, with a fastball that hovers around 99 mph, and his 6′6”, 250-pound frame is imposing. His curveball and slider are works in progress, but of course, we love the fastball (who doesn’t?), as it can hit as high as 102, which is unprecedented for a high-schooler.

The Scouts Take

Baseball America feels that there is enough support among scouts to project Kolek as a front-of-the-rotation power pitcher down the road, and noted that he cleaned up his delivery over the spring. MyMLBDraft.com stresses that his secondary pitches all need improvement as he has yet to develop a real feel for them, and there is also concern whether he will consistently throw strikes. In fairness to his three-quarters, cross-body delivery, Baseball Prospectus feels that Kolek brings a bit of deception to the table, especially when hitters are trying to spot the release of the ball. The fastball is a little straight, but yes, it’s fast.

Where He Could Land

The Astros sent the ultimate flame-thrower (Nolan Ryan) to check out Kolek, but don’t count on the them tabbing the righty with the No. 1 pick. John Manuel of Baseball America has Kolek going to Philadelphia at No. 7 in his Mock 2.0, while Keith Law of ESPN Insider expects the Chicago Cubs to grab the burly hurler at No. 4. MyMLBDraft.com is the most complimentary, with Kolek going No. to the Miami Marlins.

Where We Think He’ll Land

As of right now, it’s hard to imagine Kolek falling below the top five. He’s simply too physically gifted and in a draft rich with power arms, there may be none more powerful than his. Fellow hurlers Brady Aiken and Carlos Rodon could be taken ahead of him, as could catcher/outfielder Alex Jackson, so as things stand currently, the Cubs at No. 4 seems like the most plausible destination for Kolek.

Fantasy Outlook

Kolek is built to throw a lot of innings, and it’s hard to envision him not winding up at the very least as No. 2 or 3 starter. Could he be the next great big Texas arm in the mold of Roger Clemens, Josh Beckett and Shelby Miller?

Now it’s your turn. Let us know in the comments below where you think Kolek winds up.

RotoRob’s Fantasy Baseball Weekly Podcast

Crave more in-depth Fantasy analysis? Then join us every Thursday at 9 p.m. EST for RotoRob Fantasy Baseball Weekly Podcast on Blogtalkradio as we entertain and edify you for an hour or more each week. This week, RotoRob will be joined by MLB Writer Michael Seff. Tune in here.

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2014 RotoRob MLB Draft Kit: Top 65 Prospects, Part IV

May 17, 2014 | by RotoRob | Comments (2)
Sure enough, he spent the entire 2013 season at High-A before being promoted to Double-A this year. Early on this season, Sanchez is dealing with some wildness (26 walks, four hit batsmen and one wild pitch in 43 1/3 IP), but it has not hurt his bottom line results — yet. The righty is Toronto’s top prospect and while he dealt with some shoulder woes last year, he’s generally remained healthy as a pro. Sanchez could be a top of the rotation hurler, but he’ll need to sharpen that command along the way. His record at High-A wasn’t great in 20 starts and a low BABIP (.250) suggests a bit of luck was involved in keeping his ERA below 3.50. Sanchez’s K rate dipped in the AFL (although he made the All-Prospect Team), and so far this year, he’s benefited from a pretty high strand rate. Don’t be fooled by that very low ERA at Double-A as so far his peripherals don’t support it. In a nutshell, we love Sanchez’s K potential (he’s averaged over one per inning), but that control (4.7 BB/9 in his career) needs fixing. He has a perfect pitcher’s build (6′4″, 200).
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2014 RotoRob MLB Draft Kit: Top 65 Prospects, Part III

April 19, 2014 | by RotoRob | Comments Comments Off
Odorizzi has had trouble against lefties, so bear this in mind when he faces a team that leans in that direction. Originally taken 32nd overall by Milwaukee in 2008, he’s been very durable in his career (and could remain as such thanks to a very smooth, easy delivery) and hasn’t shown any alarming weaknesses, but has periodically had issues with the long ball.
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2014 RotoRob MLB Draft Kit: Top 65 Prospects, Part II

April 9, 2014 | by RotoRob | Comments (1)
Some think Frazier is the Indians’ second best prospect, but we want to see what he does at full-season ball before bumping him up more. Still, he didn’t skip a beat moving to pro ball, and is a serious high end talent in a system that lacks depth. The right-handed hitting Frazier showed no vulnerability against righties, recording an 875 OPS en route to being named an AZL Post-Season All-Star. So far, Frazier has been durable, but like many young hitters, needs to improve his contact rates. There may not have been a better source of power in last year’s draft than this kid, so it will be exciting to see what kind of home run totals he can amass as he moves up the ladder.
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2014 RotoRob MLB Draft Kit: Top 65 Prospects, Part I

March 31, 2014 | by RotoRob | Comments (1)
All told, Edwards racked up a whopping 155 strikeouts in 116 1/3 IP. Part of a suddenly exciting cadre of young Cubs’ talent getting ready to descend upon the majors, he needs to add weight if he’s going to have the durability to last as a starter, but we still like him a bit more than some prospect experts. We love that Edwards has a nice groundball rate, as that will stead him well as he moves up the ladder and is unable to blow the ball by more advanced hitters as often. Obviously, he can’t be fully judged until he fills out, but we will learn a lot more about this kid this year when he tackles Double-A. Still, so far he looks like a serious steal considering the Rangers nabbed the righty in the 48th round in 2011.
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