Toronto Blue Jays: Draft Targets 2.0: Pitcher’s Edition
Michael McGreevy: RHP UC Santa Barbara – #32 on MLB Pipeline
“No college pitcher has more helium right now” than Michael McGreevy of UC Santa Barbara. McGreevy, who pitched solely as a reliever for the Gauchos as a freshman, came into the 2020 season as a full-time starter and had a great beginning to his campaign, posting a 0.99 ERA in four starts before the COVID-19 shutdown.
The California native had success to open his college career because of his elite command, which earned a 60 grade on MLB Pipeline, the highest in the class. McGreevy didn’t light up the radar gun in his first two seasons in Santa Barbara, with a fastball that sat in the upper 80’s to low 90’s. This forced him to learn how to locate his heater and to figure out how to keep hitters off balance by mixing up his pitches.
This season, McGreevy has seen an uptick in velocity, as his fastball now sits in the low to mid 90’s, and will touch 96mph on occasion. This extra velocity has not affected McGreevy’s command and has led to a very impressive season where he’s gone 6-1, posting a 2.96 ERA while striking out 10.4 batters per nine innings (a career-high), and posting an insane K/BB ratio of 11/1.
Scouts have loved what they’ve seen from McGreevy so far this year which has caused him to rocket up the draft boards and is now seen as a real candidate to go in the first round this July.
Despite already seeing an uptick in velocity this season, I think that there is even more untapped power in McGreevy, as he really only pitches with his upper body, so some mechanical adjustments could help him tap into a couple of extra clicks on the radar gun. McGreevy’s offspeed pitches are still raw and will have to be developed if he wants to remain a starter at the next level. He has a slider that’s shown swing and miss potential and a curveball that he can get over for strikes but neither are considered to be above average pitches at the moment.
Although most people see McGreevy as a late first-round selection, I think some teams may fall in love with his command and he may not last until pick 19. If he does, the UC Santa Barbara product could be a nice change of pace for a Jays farm system that has a lot of guys who light up the radar gun but struggle with command.