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Nice Article on Nick Wittgren

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6 replies to this topic

#1
Entendu

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There's also a video. I've linked the page below.

In the event Miami Marlins fans had not heard of right-handed pitching prospect Nick Wittgren, the Arizona Fall League may have totally enhanced his name recognition and prospect standing.

I saw Wittgren pitch for the Glendale Desert Dogs in the Fall League this season. He was among the best pitchers in the league. Wittgren was dependable, focused and extremely effective and reliable at the back end of the bullpen.

Wittgren pitched in 13 games for the Desert Dogs, all in relief. He saved three and gave up only six hits in 13 2/3 innings. Most remarkably, Wittgren walked only two while striking out 19. It was a very impressive fall performance.

Wittgren came to the AFL following two tremendous Minor League seasons. He had been selected by the Marlins in the ninth round of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft. Wittgren is ranked No. 20 by MLB.com on Miami's Top 20 Prospects list.

Wittgren attended McCutcheon High School in Lafayette, Ind., where he played baseball, basketball and tennis, earning high praise in each sport. He spent a year at Parkland College, where he went 10-0 before transferring to Purdue University.

At Purdue, Wittgren became a reliable closer, finishing his career ranked among the all-time Boilermakers leaders in ERA, strikeouts per nine innings pitched, strikeouts-to-walk ratio, fewest walks per nine innings, fewest hits per nine innings and WHIP.

The 22-year-old Wittgren has a well-proportioned, strong frame at 6-foot-3, 210 pounds. I don't see much more physical development on the horizon, but he should have little to no difficulty retaining good arm strength and overall health due to very solid pitching mechanics.

From his debut at two Marlins classifications in 2012, Wittgren showed an ability to throw strikes and dispatch the opposition with a mix of a 92-93 mph fastball, a crisp 79 mph curveball and an effective 83 mph changeup. His three-pitch repertoire works.

Wittgren began pitching professionally for Jamestown in the Class A Short-Season New York-Penn League and moved to Class A Greensboro in the South Atlantic League. He had a combined ERA of 1.17 in 30 2/3 innings. Wittgren yielded only 25 hits and threw to a WHIP of 0.97. He had 13 total saves.

Wittgren averaged 13.8 strikeouts as opposed to only 1.5 walks per nine innings. Outstanding.

This past season, Wittgren again pitched at two classifications as he quickly climbed the ladder in a Miami Minor League system that is loaded with outstanding pitching prospects. Combined at Class A Advanced Jupiter and Double-A Jacksonville, he had a 0.77 ERA in 52 games covering 58 1/3 innings of relief work. Wittgren had a fantastic WHIP of 0.89 while saving 26 games.

Rarely have I found a pitcher with such consistently fine statistics and results in so many mechanical pitching components. Wittgren has shown deception, command, control, repertoire, an ability to strike out hitters, and most importantly, he can slam the door on the opposition at the end of the game.

Most of Wittgren's success is based upon repeating his delivery with little to no wasted effort. He is smooth and deliberate. Wittgren finds his rhythm quickly and remains in sync from the first batter he faces to the last. He is equally tough against right- or left-handed hitters.

Wittgren is good now, but he should continue to get even better.

When I think of the Marlins' pitching staff of the near future, one word consistently comes to mind. Dominating. Wittgren clearly projects as part of that domination.

http://www.mlb.com/n...4&vkey=news_mia

I think this guy is going to be pretty good. I love our bullpen's future outlook.
  • BenderRobot likes this

#2
BenderRobot

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Sweet.
Maybe a midseason callup, eh?

#3
Eddie Altamonte

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No Doubt in my mind if not mid-season he will be a September call up once the roster is expanded
He could just make the team in April if the Marlins feel their Bullpen Depth is too thin, I know there is no need to rush players and start their arbitration eligibility clock but this kid is ML ready in every way. He doesn't need to work on any pitches and mechanics-wise they don't come any more sounder (if that is an actual term). The way he pitches he could have 100 appearances right now with no wear whatsoever on his arm... Wittgren and Cishek together would make a ballgame a 7 inning game ...that is pretty tempting! You add Ramos and Dunn into the mix and that is a solid bullpen, after the 6th inning, it would be pretty much bagels for every one. Capps looks to be talented but he was pretty hittable, he had problems with left-handed hitters and gave up too many HRs, Marlins stadium should keep more balls in the park for him, but he will still need to work on his vulnerability against left-handed hitters. At this moment Wittgren is a much more finished product than Capps and Capps would actually be the one pitcher that would keep him off the Roster in April

#4
Wild Card

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Eddie, while I do believe in Wittgren, I think you're going a tad bit overboard there. He has barely pitched at the Double-A level. I agree he has been exceptional at every level, and I certainly hope that continues, but to say he is ML ready in every single way is questionable to say the least. You might even be right, but that's certainly an assumption.

#5
Eddie Altamonte

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I thought I would be called out on saying that Wittgren is more ML ready than Capps, because that was my own opinion, in reference to Wittgen being ML ready was the post AFL scouting profile posted by Entendu that clearly explains why Wittgren is so successful even though he can't throw a baseball through a brickwall. When you look at Nick Wittgren 2 things jump at you
1. Physical Maturity
2. Pitching IQ
This is from the MLB article cited by Entendu
"Wittgren has shown deception, command, control, repertoire, an ability to strike out hitters, and most importantly, he can slam the door on the opposition at the end of the game.
Most of Wittgren's success is based upon repeating his delivery with little to no wasted effort. He is smooth and deliberate. Wittgren finds his rhythm quickly and remains in sync from the first batter he faces to the last. He is equally tough against right- or left-handed hitters".
I am not a scout but lets make a checklist on what a Pitcher needs to be successful to be a ML reliever
quality of pitches
repertoire
control and ability to locate pitches
ability to mix pitches
Deceptive Delivery
solid pitching mechanics
If you go by that Wittgren has a checkmark on each
I am not saying he is a finished product, I am saying that besides the fact that he has had a brief minor league career
he is an extremely polished pitcher right now...He is almost unhittable and has pinpoint control and 3 plus pitches
He also has rock solid pitching mechanics
I don't know if has troubled holding runners on base because if they are already on they never score and he rarely puts any runners on himself
He shows confidence and a very high pitching IQ
What else would he need to show to be ML ready?
  • floridafly likes this

#6
Hotcorner

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Seriously the pen is in really good shape. I mean there's enough randomness in relievers that they might just be okay instead of great from one year to the next, but they are at least set with capable bodies and depth in the minors for years, and with any luck they'll be really good.

That's one thing the org has gotten right lately. Develop your own relievers.

#7
Entendu

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There's still backwardness when it comes to relievers. A savvy organization should take advantage of the fact that closers are valued higher than any other reliever while providing the exact same service (if not less)




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