Grant Holmes screencap

Dodgers select RHP Grant Holmes at No. 22 in the 2014 MLB Draft

Grant Holmes screencap

Dat hair!

The Dodgers broke their streak of not drafting prep pitchers by taking Grant Holmes with the 22nd pick in the 2014 MLB Draft. This is quite the get for the Dodgers this late in the first round. The last time the Dodgers drafted a high school pitcher in the first round was Zach Lee in 2010.

Holmes, from Conway High School in South Carolina, was a consensus Top 15 talent in the draft, but fell to the Dodgers for unspecified reasons. It was an easy selection for them to make, considering a guy like Touki Toussaint went to the Diamondbacks at No. 16 (ugh). The Dodgers have a strong scouting presence in the Carolinas, as they popped Corey Seager from North Carolina two years ago.

Holmes has a legitimate mid-90s fastball that touched 100 MPH in the past. It even hit the mid-90s late in outings and has plus-life. It definitely grades out as a plus-pitch down the road.

He has one of, if not the best, high school curveball in the draft. It’s a true hammer that sits in the low-80s. It can easily be mistaken for a slider. It’ll be a big swing-and-miss pitch for him going forward.

Holmes also has a changeup that has flashed average in the past. That will need to be refined for him to remain in the rotation, but the 18-year-old has plenty of time to work on that.

His delivery needs a little work, as he finishes a more upright than I’d like to see. But everything else really reminds me of a more athletic Chad Billingsley. He doesn’t have the bigger lower-half that Billingsley does, but he has a similar delivery and arsenal (stay away from the cutter!). Holmes is also in the mold of former Dodger first-rounders Chris Withrow, Ethan Martin and, to a (much) lesser extent, Lee.

Video

Holmes is committed to the University of Florida, but this is a full-slot selection by the Dodgers, so he’ll likely take the $1,980,500 payday to become a Dodgers. Before even throwing a pitch in the majors, I’d rank Holmes as the Dodgers’ No. 8 prospect, and that could increase by the time I do my midseason rankings. I’d give him a No. 2 ceiling, but he’ll probably be a middle-of-the-rotation starter. At worst, he’s a power reliever in the mold of Withrow. He should begin his professional career at Rookie League Arizona or in the Pioneer League with Ogden. The Dodgers have been known to be aggressive with their advanced prep pitchers.

You can listen to Jared Massey and I talk about the pick on the Dugout Blues podcast.

Oh, and Holmes has at least 70-present/80-future hair. Just a great pick all-around.


About

Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin’ Kinda Blue. He co-hosts a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called “Dugout Blues.” He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif., and has yet to be shot.


344 comments
Dang88
Dang88

I wish this stuff was on tv when Kershaw got drafted 

LA_Woman
LA_Woman

Shooot, someone just got picked from my alma mater (UCI)

capnsparrow
capnsparrow

the Quakes turned a triple play and their nounser went nuts

LA_Woman
LA_Woman

What number are they on now?

Dang88
Dang88

annnnnd we are on the clock! FYGoat!

NickEustrom
NickEustrom

Love the note at the bottom of his scouting report about his character issues... Two picks, a short Jon Broxton and an outfielder, who most like as a pitcher

Dang88
Dang88

Did Dee's brother get drafted yet?

Dang88
Dang88

We cannot lose today.......it's a good day

capnsparrow
capnsparrow

is funny that the spurs turned off the AC in their building and beat the heat

ThtsaPaddlin
ThtsaPaddlin

I have determined, through thorough and quantitative analysis, that I like this draft pick. 

bluedude36
bluedude36

@LA_Woman Taylor Sparks got drafted a couple picks earlier.  (Former Eater as well)  Zot Zot!  Let's beat Oklahoma State

DBrim
DBrim moderator

@LA_Woman Dunno, but the Dodgers are done for the night.

HunterStricklandsOedipalComplex
HunterStricklandsOedipalComplex

@DBrim @PagansOedipalComplex Thanks, because

"22. Los Angeles Dodgers: Grant Holmes | RHP, Conway (S.C.) HS

And there we go, your steal of the first round. It’s tough to call a high school pitcher who is 6-feet tall a fast-track guy, but with two plus-plus pitches and outstanding feel for pitching, I think Holmes can move quickly through the system. He reminds me of an earlier version of Bartolo Colon before he gained all the weight, as a stocky guy with upper-echelon stuff. I think he’s got a great chance to be the first prep pitcher to make it to the big leagues, including Brady Aiken.
From ESPN’s 1st round pick by pick analysis"