The Cincinnati Reds will need a spot start on Wednesday and it lines up with the spot in Louisville for Raisel Iglesias, making it incredibly likely that he’s the guy that will get the call. I had a chance to see him pitch on Friday for the Bats. His line was a solid, but unspectacular 5.0IP, 6 hits, 1 home run, 3 earned runs, 3 walks and 5 strikeouts on 75 pitches.

All three runs came in the first inning when he gave up a 3-run home run. He settled in after that and had a season best nine swinging strikes in the game, helping set a season high in strikeouts as well.

There were several things that stood out from a scouting perspective on Friday night for the Cuban right hander though. Let’s dive right in.

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The mistake pitch that he made that led to a 3-run home run in the 1st inning was on a letter high fastball at 92 MPH. It was rather straight and at that velocity and location, that’s not good. And the hitter didn’t miss it either as it was absolutely blasted well into the right field bleachers. The pitch itself is one of the main things that jumped out during the game.

Iglesias changes his arm angle on purpose, to give htiters different looks. He’s not as crazy as Bronson Arroyo is, who would go from nearly sidearmed to high 3/4, but the right hander does move his release point and arm angle quite a bit more than your average pitcher does.

The higher that Iglesias gets his arm angle, the flatter his pitches become. When he bringshis arm angle to more of a high 3/4 angle his fastball loses almost all horizontal movement. He does seem to get an extra tick of velocity on the pitch when he does use that arm slot, but every time he went to it, the pitch was up in the zone and lacking movement. When he lowers his arm slot, to a lower end 3/4, his fastball may lose a MPH of velocity, but he gets so much more movement on both planes. The pitch has good horizontal armside run and shows some sinking action. Perhaps he’s only throwing that pitch with a 2-seam grip and when he is out of a higher arm slot it’s only for the 4-seam grip, but in either scenario, it could be giving something away to hitters.

For the most part, Iglesias worked in the 90-93 MPH range with his fastball and he touched higher than that at times, topping out at 95.

He’s not using his change up to often, relying mostly on fastballs and sliders. The slider remains a quality offering, a slightly above-average pitch a majority of the time, but every so often it shows itself as a well above-average offering. Without much usage of the change up, he could have some struggles against lefties without leaning on the pitch more frequently. Without the change up he’s like to wind up in the bullpen.

It’s still early in his professional career, but he’s also 25-years-old, so he’s not going to have a ton of time to develop it in games that, with all due respect to Triple-A baseball, don’t really matter. He’s had some struggles missing bats in the International League through four starts. As a starter his velocity is in that average range, and he’s been mostly a 2-pitch guy. Out of the bullpen he throws significantly harder and his usage of two pitches isn’t as much of an issue. The change up is a pitch he’s recently picked up, but it’s going to need to become a pitch he feels confident in and can use against big leaguers or the experiment of trying to convert him to a starter isn’t likely to stick.

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Doug Gray is the owner and operator of this website and has been running it since 2006 in one variation or another. You can follow him on twitter @dougdirt24, or follow the site on Facebook. and Youtube.

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