Born: 01/21/1995 (Age: 20)
|Height: 6' 1"
|Throws uphill from high 3/4 slot. Strong vertical posture at takeaway through high leg kick to the letters. High hands raise above head and break on downswing at face level. Arm swings to true straight vertical position with ball tucked behind back knee, extremely steep spine tilt. Full extension with glove hand post-break and length uphill from nadir to release point creates balance inconsistencies in weight transfer and negatively impacts command profile. Finishes square, easy deceleration/back-end arm action.
|Modesto Nuts (High A, Rockies)
|Low effort velocity. Sits 92-93 with boring action, difficult pitch to lift down in the zone. Will work up at 94-95 ahead with late life, can touch 97-98 with diminished command when angry. Holds velo through starts and in stretch. 65 raw velo and life plays down a full grade at present with loose in-zone command, predictability due to heavy reliance on pitch. Can play to a true plus or better pitch with standard command improvement and development of a supporting arsenal.
|Will flash two-plane movement, but long uphill arm action limits ability to snap pitch consistently. Pitch will roll with slurvy shape when he's late to release point. Inconsistent command and shape, lacks tight rotation.
|Circle grip, decent velo separation. Slight fade and drop, but fringe-average movement. Struggles to command consistently down in the zone, moderate feel. Set-up pitch at present, not a swing-and-miss offering.
|Show-me pitch at present with inconsistent path to release point. Decent 11-5 vertical depth but lacks requisite snap, hump visible to hitters. Arm angle suggests pitch may be best option as a secondary compliment, raw material to develop into solid-average pitch but significant projection required. 50 pitch in a best-case scenario.
There's a lot of raw material and just as much developmental uncertainty for the fireballing Venezuelan at present. He just turned 20 in January, making him more than three years younger than his average High-A competition.
It's extremely impressive that he's (more than) held is own at the level, and given the current underdevelopment of his secondary arsenal it's a testament to just how good his raw fastball can be. It's a big league pitch with extremely easy velocity. There's not much in the delivery that suggests he's capable of plus-plus velocity, but he'll routinely bring the pitch with life in the mid-90's. The pitch shows good explosion with the help of modest deception from his uphill motion, and he's able to generate in-zone whiffs against High-A hitters even in dangerous portions of the zone.
The big question is how much of a secondary arsenal he can develop to support the primary weapon. In two viewings now he hasn't shown anything with even average projection out of his three supporting pitches, and there's only so long in his developmental journey he'll be able to live as heavily off the fastball as he is currently. His curve is a clear fourth on the depth chart right now, but it may ultimately have the best potential to develop into a workable compliment.
There's ample fire in the belly, and he'll need to corral his emotions a bit better as he matures. The team has been aggressive with Senzatela thus far and he's answered the challenge. He has the look of a future bullpen asset at this point if he can find a 50 in his secondary arsenal, and the Rockies have the luxury of ample time on their side in helping him develop one.