It is officially draft season. Like I did last year, I’m going to profile some of the talent in the 2015 draft — specifically, guys I think the Dodgers have a chance to select and some guys I’d like to see them select.
The Dodgers have five picks in the first 101 and two of the first 35 picks, so I’m going to try to get as many of these done before June 8. First up is right-handed pitcher Dakota Chalmers, no relation to Super Nintendo Chalmers.
6’3, 175 pounds
DOB: Oct. 8, 1996
Days younger than Julio Urias: 57
North Forsyth High School
Slot recommended bonus (No. 24): $2,094,400
Slot recommended bonus (No. 35): $1,756,100
Editor’s note: All information of draft prospects compiled from internet sources, scouting reports and video.
With Logan White leaving for San Diego over the winter, the Dodgers’ draft strategy could be different for the first time in more than a decade. But my preference hasn’t changed. I like the upside potential for prep players, and Chalmers falls right into that category.
He was a blip on the scouting radar before last summer when his sitting velocity ticked up from the 88-90 MPH to the low-90s. He even touched as high as 98 MPH, but like most pitchers, he has trouble commanding the higher velocity. He’s more comfortable working in the 90-94 MPH range, which is really good considering his lanky frame. He complements his fastball with an high-70s curveball that is a hammer and flashed solid-average-to-plus potential, a slider that needs some refinement and a fringy changeup.
The biggest worry scouts have is about the effort in his delivery. As you’ll see in the video below, it isn’t your prototypical delivery. It starts off well, as he brings his hands together at belt-level just before he begins his delivery. As he turns on the rubber, he kicks his leg way up, as his knee gets to chest-level. His back leg collapses as he drives toward the plate. This is where the effort comes in. As his front foot lands, his arm is dragging a little bit, which means he’s using his upper-body a lot for arm speed. The motion isn’t completely fluid and his head is all over the place, which could be a precursor to a future injury. He can rush his delivery at times and that causes his front side to fly open and miss up to the arm side. With professional instruction, most of that stuff can be cleaned up.
He has really good athleticism in his slight frame. Because of the frame, he has a lot of projection there (although, I’m not sure how you could improve on 98 MPH). If he adds some good weight and is able to maintain (or, safely, increase) his velocity and the quality of his breaking/off-speed pitches, he could have a high ceiling.
With the pitching depth the Dodgers possess, they won’t necessarily have to draft a fast-mover, and Chalmers probably wouldn’t be. He isn’t as good as Grant Holmes, who is already pitching in Low-A at age-19. But, there is potential in that arm and frame for him to be a middle-of-the-rotation starter. Aside from the mechanics that need a little work, this would be a very Logan White-esque selection by Billy Gasparino. Chalmers will be high on my initial draft Big Board, due later this month.