Date Scouted: 5/15/15 in-person
7-Word Scouting Report: Workhorse, Plus Fastball, Potential Three Above-Average Secondaries
On a flawless spring evening for baseball, this past Friday I drove up Route 50 to watch the Bowie Baysox, the Double-A team for the Orioles, hosted the Richmond Flying Squirrels, San Francisco’s affiliate. In particular I wanted to seize the opportunity to watch Baltimore’s consensus top prospect, right-handed pitcher Dylan Bundy, in action against the experienced Richmond lineup. Unfortunately it was a difficult night for both the home team and Bundy, as they were defeated 8-4.
In this viewing Bundy completed two innings and pitched to two batters in the third, throwing 57 total pitches, 36 for strikes and 21 balls. In his two innings Bundy allowed eight hits and six runs (five earned) against no walks and two strikeouts. Bundy featured a 92-95mph fastball, touching 96mph three times, and showed powerful late life. Throughout this outing Bundy was focusing on repeatedly pounding the inside of the strike zone, especially to righties, to the detriment of fooling the opposing hitters.
In addition Bundy flashed a nasty 81-84mph slider with late, hard biting action that easily graded as a plus offering. He did not throw his slider often after inducing a few whiffs in the first inning, seemingly shelving the offering after getting the early desired results. Furthermore, Bundy threw two 73mph curveballs with true 12-6 movement that he buried low in the strike zone. Finally he tossed three 83-84mph changeups with true splitter-type action that induced a flailing whiff and was easily an above-average offering.
Physically Bundy has a prototypical major league pitchers frame, as he has tree trunks for legs and well-formed musculature throughout his upper body. His delivery has mild effort and he throws from a high three-quarters arm slot through his drop-and-drive motion. He has a small arm stab in the back along with a deep arm movement but nothing of major concern. Bundy does a nice job of staying in balance during the delivery and repeats his motion well, though there is a small spine tilt during release. Overall Bundy has a solid, repeatable delivery and the frame to pitch 200+ innings annually.
Although the results were lackluster on this evening, it is easily apparent why Bundy is one of the top pitching prospects in the minors. Bundy has a repeatable delivery, a well-built, durable pitcher’s body, along with the potential for a plus-plus fastball and three above-average secondary offerings. Certainly there is risk involved with his future potential due to his past Tommy John surgery and current mediocre command of the strike zone, but Bundy has the ceiling of a legitimate top-of-the-rotation starting pitcher.
Expect the Orioles to continue to patiently develop him this summer at Double-A, with the possibility of unleashing him against major league hitters in September during a potential playoff run. I am dubious he develops into a true major league “Ace” during his career, but barring injury, I expect Bundy to pitch as a solid #2/#3 starter for many seasons.
* Special Thank You to Matt Wilson and the Bowie Baysox for their much-appreciated hospitality on Friday and the past few seasons. *