Kyle Wright Selected No. 5 by Braves in 2017 MLB Draft

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJune 12, 2017

Vanderbilt starter Kyle Wright pitches against Washington in the first inning of an NCAA college baseball regional tournament game Saturday, June 4, 2016, in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)
Mark Humphrey/Associated Press

The Atlanta Braves used the No. 5 overall pick in the 2017 MLB draft Monday night to select Vanderbilt starting pitcher Kyle Wright.

Atlanta Braves @Braves

With the 5th overall selection in the 2017 #MLBDraft, the #Braves select RHP Kyle Wright (@Kyle_Wright44). #BravesDraft https://t.co/oLXw2PVQMk

Wright, who began his Commodores career working out of the bullpen in 2015, has developed into one of the top collegiate starters in the country over the past two years.

The 21-year-old right-hander posted a 3.09 ERA with 107 strikeouts in 93.1 innings across 16 starts during the 2016 campaign. He's backed up those rock-solid numbers with a 3.40 ERA and 121 strikeouts in 103.1 innings in 2017.

With those numbers, here's how social media reacted to the Braves adding Wright:


Meet @Kyle_Wright44 – and #RememberTheName TONIGHT. #MLBDraft https://t.co/czRy83Zeeh

Jon Heyman @JonHeyman

Kyle Wright, who has big arm and had huge finish for Vandy, nice pick for braves, already rich with pitching prospects.

Grant McAuley @grantmcauley

New #Braves draftee RHP Kyle Wright averaged 10.2 K/9, 3.0 BB/9, 7.1 H/9 and just 0.3 HR/9 in 255 IP during his collegiate career at Vandy.

Carlos Collazo @CarlosACollazo

Kyle Wright could easily be the best player in the class.

Jeff Passan @JeffPassan

Braves were trying for an under-slot deal with Austin Beck or Keston Hiura. Seems as though they're settling on RHP Kyle Wright at No. 5.

His repertoire is still in the developmental stages. He possesses two plus pitches, a fastball that can touch the upper-90s and a put-away curveball. His other offerings are still a work progress, however, which is why Vandy was smart to ease him into college ball as a reliever.

Although Wright's slider has shown the most promise among his secondary pitches, the improvement of his changeup will be more important in determining whether he becomes a top-tier starter. That will be the main focus during his journey through the minor leagues.

Video Play Button
Videos you might like

That said, when you combine his current ability with his remaining upside, it's easy to see why he was viewed as one of the draft class' top prospects.

Josh Bertaccini‏ of KQSM provided high praise about the starter from Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn in May.

"I don't think I've ever seen a better college arm than Vanderbilt's Kyle Wright and I've been doing this for 30 years," Van Horn said. "He's tremendous."

Those comments illustrate why this is such a massive addition to the Braves' farm system. Wright should develop into a No. 2 starter, and his floor is high because the two developed pitches would make him a good bullpen commodity at the very least.

He'll join the likes of left-hander Kolby Allard and right-hander Mike Soroka as the top pitching prospects in the Atlanta system.

slash iconYour sports. Delivered.

Enjoy our content? Join our newsletter to get the latest in sports news delivered straight to your inbox!