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1. Dylan Bundy (RHP)
The $4 million dollars that the Orioles used to sign 19 year old Dylan Bundy in 2011 is starting to look like a real bargain. Bundy was overwhelmingly dominate during his 20 games across Low-A and High-A where he struck out 106 while walking 20. He was then moved to Double-A for three games at the end of the season before making his Major League debut in September. Talk about a year…
Leading up to the 2011 draft, reports surfaced that Bundy’s arsenal and polish was so advanced that he was nearly Major League ready. Being the skeptic, I simply said…”Sure, I’ve heard this story before”. However, when I got a chance to see him pitch, I started saying the same thing. The velocity, the movement, the deep arsenal and most importantly, a very easy delivery had me convinced that Bundy might be the best pitcher in the draft – by far. Based on 2012, he might be the best pitching prospect since Stephen Strasburg.
Bundy’s arsenal is deep with a fastball that sits 95-96 MPH with nice movement, a hard slider that is at least a plus offering, an upper 70’s curve that is absolutely a beautiful pitch, and a change-up that might just be his best offering. He hasn’t been throwing the two-seamer or cutter since being drafted; as the Orioles want him to focus on commanding his other pitches. While a lot of people have criticized the Orioles for not allowing him to throw his cutter, it doesn’t matter how deep your arsenal is if you can’t command your fastball and throw your secondary pitches for strikes. I think the approach makes sense as inconsistent command is the only thing left for Bundy to master.
I like to stress pitching mechanics in my pitcher evaluation as in the end, it’s what allows pitchers to command their arsenal and ultimately be successful. Bundy’s mechanics are a thing of beauty. His posture is great, which in combination with his high three-quarters delivery, allows him to pitch with a downward plane even though he is only 6-foot-1. The balance is also great with Bundy finishing his pitches very well. Finally, the delivery is easy and smooth with very little wasted energy. To me, he looks like a Major League pitcher.
The big question is where Dylan Bundy will start 2013. While he could start in the Orioles rotation, don’t be surprised if the Orioles start him back in Double-A or Triple-A for more seasoning. His fastball command isn’t great and he still doesn’t find the strike zone consistently with his secondary pitches. That said, unless the Orioles make an offseason move, he might be their best pitcher.
Fantasy Impact: Bundy’s upside is a top five fantasy pitcher with elite strikeout totals and great ratios. I don’t expect him to dominate as Strasburg immediately did, but by the 2015 season, you could start to see him reach his full potential. If you’re in a new Dynasty League, I would treat him as a Top 20 overall pitcher (including major league talent).
2. Kevin Gausman (RHP)
3. Jonathan Schoop (SS/2B/3B)
4. Eduardo Rodriguez (LHP)
5. Xavier Avery (OF)
6. Nick Delmonico (1B)
7. L.J. Hoes
8. Branden Kline (RHP)
9. Adrian Marin (SS)
10. Parker Bridwell (RHP)
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