Player: Cody Reed
Drafted by: Arizona Diamondbacks
DOB: 06/07/1996 (Age: 17)
Height/Weight: 6’5”, 260 pounds
School: Ardmore HS (Ala.)
College Commitment: Vanderbilt
If you’re a fan of pitchers who pile up strikeouts, then chances are you’ll love left-hander Cody Reed. As a junior at Ardmore High School, the 6’5” left-hander went 10-1 with a 1.25 ERA and 159 strikeouts in 73 innings (19.6 K/9).
After experiencing an uptick in velocity in velocity this spring, Reed emerged as arguably the top strikeout artist in the country among high school pitchers, as he finished his senior season with a 0.46 ERA and unbelievable 226 strikeouts in 92 innings (22.1 K/9). Along the way, the southpaw recorded three games with 19 strikeouts, one with 20 and one with 21.
Full Scouting Report
Note: Numerical scores are based on the conventional 20-80 scouting scale, with the current score first and projected score second.
Surprising athleticism to 6’5”, 260-pound frame; potential to be a durable, workhorse starter, but he will need to work to stay in shape for duration of career; good balance and pace to delivery; long arm on the back side hides the ball and creates big-time deception; lightning-quick arm and hand speed from low three-quarters slot; tends to collapse front side on follow-through, resulting in a varying arm slot and plane toward the plate.
Velocity has jumped from low 90s to 94-96 mph this spring as he’s added strength and started to fill out; pitch tends to play up in games due to deception in delivery; impressive present feel for pounding zone with the pitch; potential to add even more velocity with physical development.
Fast arm action produces tight spin and sharp, downer break but also makes it difficult to control; projects to be at least average at maturity; low arm slot causes him to get under the pitch, resulting in inconsistent shape and pace.
Devastating offering with sharp, late break in low 80s that should serve as his out pitch at the next level; highly effective when thrown off fastball thanks to overall deception; excellent feel for burying pitch below zone and spotting on back foot versus right-handed hitters.
Least advanced offering due to lack of need at high school level; potential to be a near-average offering with proper development; pitch will be crucial toward his success and progress as a professional.
Exhibits surprising control and feel for pitching, considering his size and arm speed; athleticism allows him to repeat delivery; consistently around the plate with fastball/slider/curveball; effectively wild at times; control projects to be at least average at maturity.
Natural deception and innate ability to miss bats will take some pressure of his development of command; will likely rely on stuff rather than location; present feel for sequencing four-pitch mix; capacity to make adjustments has yet to be tested as a result of sheer dominance against high school competition.
MLB Player Comparison: CC Sabathia
Beyond the obvious physical similarities, Reed compares to CC Sabathia for his electric fastball/slider combination and overall potential to boast a four-pitch mix at maturity.
Projection: No. 2 or 3 starter
Major Leagues ETA: 2017
Chances of Signing: 50 percent
Reed has some serious helium heading into the draft, as the left-hander arguably was the nation’s most impressive strikeout artist among prep hurlers. However, with what’s believed to be a strong commitment to Vanderbilt next season, he likely will have to come off the board in the first couple of rounds to consider signing.