Amir Garrett update

Well, this could certainly get interesting.

As I wrote earlier today, college basketball recruit Amir Garrett is known mostly for his work on the court and he’s got a commitment to St. John’s to play hoops there.

We might want to hold off for just a minute. Garrett has played some baseball, too, though it had been a while — though he evidently was at Team USA trials last summer, but didn’t make the team. The fact there was some interest in baseball, then, isn’t a huge surprise and he’s been on some teams’ follow lists as a result. Still, he hasn’t been on radar screens much because he’s not on his high school team and hasn’t played in a game (and won’t).

But for the past two months or so, he’s been working with a pitching coach, throwing bullpens and this afternoon (Wednesday), he threw for close to 50 scouts at the College of Southern Nevada’s field, one-time home of super-prospect Bryce Harper.

He’s 6-foot-5 and he’s left-handed. And during his approximately 40-pitch long workout, he was throwing fastballs in the 92-95 mph range, with a report or two of 96 mph. He doesn’t have much in the way of secondary stuff, throwing a couple curveballs and changeups, neither of which really stood out. A cutter might work for him down the line. While he’s obviously very raw on the mound, the athleticism he has on the court showed up on the mound. He may not have had much of an arsenal yet, but he looked fairly effortless in pumping in plus fastballs.

So, what next? There likely will be more bullpen sessions, though one hasn’t been officially set up as of yet. He’s likely to draw more attention whenever that comes. The biggest questions that need to be answered are: Does he really want to play baseball? How much will it take bonus-wise to get him to walk away from St. John’s basketball? And how will teams evaluate just what they have here with a guy just throwing bullpens and not playing in a game situation? There’s no doubt he’s a project, but is he one a team would be willing to take fairly early in the Draft and give him the payday that might be necessary to get him to pitch professionally? Time will tell…

Stay tuned on this one…


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