Jacob Heatherly, the Cincinnati Reds 3rd round selection in the 2017 Major League Baseball draft pitched last week in instructional league. Fangraphs writer Eric Longenhagen was at the game and posted some video from the outing.
The Reds began Jacob Heatherly in Arizona, pitching for the AZL Reds. The left handed pitcher threw 30.2 innings with a 2.93 ERA with 16 walks and 26 strikeouts. He would then make three starts for Billings to end his 2017 campaign, throwing 9.0 innings. It was a struggle in those three starts as he allowed 12 earned runs on 17 hits with four walks and five strikeouts.
After the season Jacob Heatherly got a short time off before heading back to Arizona to take part in instructional league. Watching the video above, we can see some good things. First, his fastball has movement on both planes. There’s some good running action on it and there’s a little bit of sink there, too. According to the report at Fangraphs, the pitch was working in the low-90’s on the day. His breaking ball was solid in the video above, but didn’t stick out either.
When he was drafted the scouting reports noted that he would flash a plus breaking ball. That wasn’t on display here, though we’re dealing with an incredibly small look, too. I’m intrigued by the fastball more than the breaking ball at this point. I like the movement and he showed good control of the pitch in the limited viewing. It’s a pitch that looks like it’ll play well as long as he can locate it outside of the middle of the strikezone.
More info on the new Greeneville affiliate
Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer has some new information on the new Greeneville affiliate that the Reds picked up.
The Reds also will own and operate the Greeneville team, meaning there are no affiliate agreements involved. The Reds will have a team there until the moment they decide they no longer want it.
Cincinnati won’t own the stadium. The Greeneville franchise plays at Pioneer Park, which is on the campus of Tusculum College. That will make the front office staff easier to fill out as there’s less to handle than if they were owning and operating the stadium.
I haven’t had a chance to look into the park factor yet for the stadium. The Appalachian League is much more pitcher friendly than the Pioneer League is. In 2017 the average line in the Pioneer League was .293/.370/.457 compared to a .262/.339/.392 in the Appalachian League. I’ll run the park factors for the league and park later this month when I start doing the yearly park factors for the affiliates.