Continuing our series of 2016 MLB Draft prospect previews, with just a few days left before draft day itself, we turn our attention back to the high school pitching ranks with a look at Kyle Muller, from Jesuit College Preparatory School in Dallas, Texas.
Muller made a name for himself on the showcase circuit last summer, emerging as a prospect as both a hitter and pitcher. Nine months ago it appeared that he would most likely attend the University of Texas next year, but his performance this spring has changed that.
Listed at 6-3, 200 in the past, Muller is up to 6-5, 230 now, based on maturity and positive strength gains but without loss of athleticism or flexibility. Last year his fastball was in the 85-88 range but that has increased significantly this spring, his heater now running at 91-94 with peaks at 95. His curveball was erratic last summer but it has improved as well and with a bit more consistency it will be a plus pitch. There's a change-up, too, which will need more development but should be at least average in time. Command and control have also taken a significant step forward. Overall, if he continues developing at his present pace he could have three plus pitches.
This isn't all about arm strength: Muller is an excellent overall athlete who is also a very good prospect as a left-handed power hitter (who can also steal bases). He had 15 homers and 15 steals through mid-May while hitting .442.
Arm strength, athleticism, improved command, positive makeup, and a good bat to boot, everything looks great for Muller this spring. At this point it is unlikely that he'll get to the University of Texas, as he should not get past the compensation round.