Baseball Spy’s first game of 2019! And we are officially launched at 1:00 PM MT, 5 minutes before first pitch!
Aaron Brooks (RHP) started for Oakland and threw what seemed like over 50% Change-ups. I’ve got it graded as a Major League average offering. He didn’t feature many breaking pitches, and the ones he did tended to lack consistent shape and sharpness. His 2-seam FB was 89-91 mostly sinking and he ran his 4-seam FB from 92-94 but the command was only fringe-average at best. Still he showed solid control overall and ability to compete with FB/CH combo. He’s a guy on the periphery of a roster, but if he gets his command going a bit better and gets one of the breaking pitches going enough to at least be a change of pace/look type of pitch – he can be a Role 3 Long Reliever. Right now I have him more as an extra big leaguer, up-down value.
Oakland started most of their main guys with new off-season acquisition, Jurikson Profar, the former #1 prospect in the sport according to multiple publications, looking pretty good from both sides of the dish. He showed good plate coverage and the ability to hit the ball with authority to all fields. I like his quick twitch swing and he plays the game with enthusiasm and a smile. Maybe this change of scenery will help creep towards the unrealistic and often lofty expectations bestowed upon him as a minor leaguer. In the 5th inning we started to see the mass exodus of starters during these Spring Training games but that means 4 of Oakland’s better prospects appeared, all of whom I’ve scouted before: Catcher Sean Murphy, INF Jorge Mateo, OF Luis Barrera, and INF Franklin Barretto. Tough to write up full reports on an AB or two, especially this early in the Spring. However, on first glance, Franklin looks in mid-season form. With his filled-out short, stocky, strong and athletic frame he looks like he got very serious about his conditioning and strength. He showed a quiet, compact but strong swing – rifling 2 balls over SS, and turning one into a hustle double out of the box, going 4.5 down the line on a turn. He’s definitely trying to win a roster spot.
I wasn’t really that focused on Colorado’s hitters but prospect Ryan McMahon, who I have never seen live before, stood out. He showed me a really nice powerful swing from the left-hand side, belting a homer later in the game – the swing was fluid and quick with a good path to the ball.
Overall, it’s good to be back at the ballpark scouting again! Day 1 in the books.