The 2016 Major League Baseball amateur draft is less than three months away. Let's start our coverage of the draft class with a brief look at right-hander Riley Pint, a high school pitcher from Overland Park, Kansas (a suburb of Kansas City).
Pint enters the draft season very highly rated: he ranks fourth on Baseball America's list of Top 100 draft prospects, as well as third on Perfect Game's list of top high school prospects. If his first outing is any indication, Pint will certainly be one of the first players off the board in June.
Pint pitched three excellent innings this past Tuesday and added a grand slam home run to the mix. David Rawnsley of Perfect Game was at the contest and filed a very enthusiastic report on his draft blog:
Pint's three innings on the mound were nothing short of spectacular. He pitched at 95-99 mph in the first inning and settled in at 93-96 for the next two frames. . .The biggest revelation of the outing, however, was Pint's changeup, which he threw 8-10 times almost all at 88 mph. Throwing an 88 mph changeup to high school hitters seems at the surface to be doing them a big favor but the movement and location on the pitch made it no favor. . .Pint's curveball, which he threw maybe 6 times and primarily in strikeout counts, was a third pitch that showed plus at times. It was mostly 83 mph from a consistent release point and arm speed as his fastball and had big hard biting action about half the time.
There's a lot more in Rawnsley's report and (like everything else David writes) it is worth your time to read; he makes particular note of Pint's improved command and control compared to his showcase outings last summer.
Pint is listed at 6-5, 195, a right-handed hitter and thrower born November 6th, 1997. He is committed to Louisiana State but if he goes as early as anticipated signability likely isn't an issue. Multiple reports place Pint as a potential first-overall pick to the Phillies. No high school right-hander has ever been drafted first-overall before and the fact that Pint is even in the conversation is testament to his great talent.
I don't live far from Overland Park, so I will go see Pint myself soon. Stay tuned for the report!
Here's some Baseball America video of Pint from last summer.