MLB Scout School: Day 5

“Ability and desire, then you have a star!”
-MLSB Development Handbook

“You can’t just look at his performance. This was instructional league. He was probably working on something,” Rusty explained. My instructor and I were reviewing my scout report on a 20-year old, former first round draft pick for the Angels, who had struggled with his command that day. As we reflected on the pitcher’s outing, Rusty rolled up his hand like a spy glass and asked me, “what does he have? What can he do?”

I thought about what that 6’3, left-handed pitcher could do. He threw between 90-95; mostly at 92. That’s a “good” fastball (grade: 6). His fastball (FB) had occasional cutting action, with sink down in the zone. His change had fading action away from the right-handed hitter (RHH). The curve had a ¾ break. I graded his present control “below average” (grade: 4) with a future grade of 5 (average). I noted, “struggled in command. Will improve with experience.” In my summation, I predicted he had the chance to be a major league (ML) quality #3 starter. In other words – he was a prospect.

As we mulled over that scouting report, Rusty was really reminding me of a life lesson. Truthfully, this scout development program has challenged me. And sometimes I doubt my abilities. But I think I need to use my own self-reflecting spyglass. I need to see not what I don’t do but rather what I can do. And like that Angels pitcher – recognize that I’m just “working on something.” That I’m not done developing.

Scout school is like my own Instructional League. And I might just be a prospect.

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