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Mark Appel

Born: 07/15/1991 (Age: 22)
Bats: Right Throws: Right
Height: 6' 5" Weight: 220
High three-quarters arm slot; inconsistent downhill plane; struggles spotting pitches down; great size and body; average athlete; clean delivery that checks off all the boxes; powerful hip rotation; upper half can fly open at times; lacks deception; easy to pick up the ball out of his hand; tipped pitches in second look with hand placement in glove and straight to home plate; became more closed in third outing to correct issue.
Evaluator Ron Shah
Report Date 06/21/2014
Affiliate Lancaster JetHawks (High A, Astros)
Dates Seen 04/23/14; 05/31/14; 06/12/14
OFP 55
MLB ETA 2016
Video Yes
Pitch Type Future Grade Sitting Velocity Peak Velocity Report
Fastball 60 92-93 94 Four-seam fastball with solid movement at the lower velocity range; fastball command is present glove side; struggles to hit the lower quadrants and consistently keep the offering down; inconsistent downhill plane causes for flat fastballs over the heart of the plate; mostly just grooves the offering over the plate; creates for hard hits and drives to the warning track.
Changeup 60 82 83 Changeup flashes plus potential; late vertical action; fades; excellent deception; didn't have feel until the third inning; shows confidence in the offering; will throw it to same and opposite-sided batters; inconsistent command; leaves it up where it can get hit, but still shows tumble regardless of location;
Slider 50 84 86 Slider showed mostly below-average; could get to solid-average; flat; left over the plate; running theme of tightening up command; at its best shows two-plane break with late break to glove side;

I have seen the player make three consecutive starts. In the first look, the fastball velocity was well down from his usual range. The velocity returned in the second outing, hitting 97, but had a thumb injury. No injuries or other reasons for a poor third start, so the grades are from that look.

The player's struggled to make adjustments to professional baseball. I don't blame the tandem rotation, as he's been on extended rest in each of my looks, and he's started each of them rather than coming out of the bullpen. After each of the poor outings, the player never shows emotion when he's on the mound or when being pulled -- just takes a seat in the dugout as if nothing happened. I don't mind players that don't wear their heart on their sleeve, but he pitches like it's a bullpen session where he just needs to get his work in, grooving in pitches with no purpose.

It is worth noting that only one secondary offering would show up in each of his starts. Also, hitters did not have trouble squaring up his fastball whatsoever. That may always be the case because he just doesn't have deception in his delivery. But he does tip his offerings with his wrist placement; recommend keeping an eye on his stretch vs. windup splits.

Right now, the player just doesn't look like the player he was drafted to be. I haven't seen anything to even consider he could be a No. 2 starter, or even more. I'm concerned more with how he pitches than what his fastball is registering on the radar gun. A backend starter appears to be the realistic role based on my recent looks.

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