Last Friday I went back to Trenton, this time to claim a David Robertson bobblehead that looks nothing like him. As an added bonus, Andrew Brackman was pitching.
A quick catch-up: Andrew Brackman dropped to the Yankees in the first round in 2007 due to signability concerns and they grabbed him then signed him to a contract that I am not a big fan of because it escalates the need for his development time (major league deal for a not polished pitcher, nooooo). He pretty much immediately had Tommy John surgery, and last year was his first pitching in the system. He didn’t really impress much with his stuff or results but he’s been much better this year.
Nota Bene: I am not a scout and am not trying to represent myself as such. I cannot talk about mechanics, I won’t grade pitches or tools, I am just talking about my impressions of notable kids I happen to see.
The first thing you notice about Andrew Brackman is, not surprisingly, that he is very tall. He’s 6’11″ which is the sort of height that sounds impressive and manages to look even more impressive (it’s also why the Yankees and other folks drooled over him so much).
I had what you might call a good seat for the game:
The best part of prospect stalking, aside from the stalking of prospects, is getting seats that are much better than I’ll ever have if/when they make it to the Major Leagues, and at approximately 1/1000th the price.
Brackman is amazing to look at because he is a checklist of all the things scouts love in a pitching prospect physically:
- Room to fill out
- Long arms
- I’m sure there’s something else I’m forgetting
Look at that picture. You can hear the screams of “DOWNWARD PLANE!!!!” from the mouths of frothing talent evaluators in the background if you listen closely enough.
Waterfront Park doesn’t have a radar gun up for the crowd, but my friend checked with some of the scouts sitting behind us who told us Brackman was sitting 93-94 and hitting 96 which is a huge difference from last year. His curveball was, to my eye, everything you have heard. I know that last year he sort of lost it but when it’s there it is a great, great pitch. He has a changeup (not sure on the speed) that was also very nice. His fastball sinks a bit so he gets a lot of groundouts rather than fly outs, which is also nice.
Also he runs funny (which makes sense given his height and gangliness) but I was giggling too much to take pictures of him running to cover first base on a play.
If you want to read an actual real scouting report, check out Frankie Piliere’s writeup. He was also at the game and said that it’s the first time he’s seen Brackman and been “impressed”, which is good!
Brackman went through 4 innings with not much drama, but was lifted in the 5th after recording two outs. He walked two in a row and had just totally lost the zone, which is apparently a thing that happens to him when he hits around 80 pitches. The word is that he loses his mechanics a bit at that point for whatever reason, though I obviously cannot confirm that. You can read some more about that over at Mike Ashmore’s Thunder Thoughts.
Taking advantage of my seating, I recorded a few videos that are not great quality for anyone interested.
And lastly, I took a lot of pictures. Most of these of Brackman, a few of them are 1-2-3 action shots of him tossing and a couple of other non tall pitcher shots. They’re over at Picasaweb with the rest of my photos:
|Trenton Thunder 08-06-2010|