MLB Draft Scouting Report: Sonny Gray
This story originally published on ScoutingBaseball.com
Sonny Gray (Don McPeak-US PRESSWIRE)
National Baseball Expert
Posted Jun 4, 2011


Scouting reports are the foundation of the talent evaluation system, and the reports that are used on draft day are developed from multiple viewings over the course of a player’s amateur career. As part of our draft coverage here at Scout.com, we’ll be providing team quality first-hand scouting reports on the names you need to know on draft day. Here’s a look at pitcher, Sonny Gray. (FREE PREVIEW)

Name: Sonny Gray
Position: Pitcher
School: Vanderbilt
Height: 5-foot-11
Weight: 180
Bats/Throws: R/R

Events Scouted: SEC Tournament, Team USA

Sonny Gray, RHP, Vanderbilt from Frankie Piliere on Vimeo.



Physical Description

It’s no secret that Gray is undersized, particularly for a right-handed starting pitcher. He’s listed at 5-foot-11, but shouldn’t be undersold physically. He’s physically strong and has a thick trunk and lower half. He’s going to lose out on some downward plane because of his lack of height, but he still should be strong and durable.

Mechanics

There are some concerns about Gray’s arm action, and those aren’t unfounded. There’s some effort and roughness to his arm action. Given his lack of size, that could be an issue. But, overall he repeats exceptionally well, stays on top and uses his lower half to his advantage. The only real concern is the mild arm action issues.

Fastball

Gray is the owner of a power fastball, and has one of the best feels for that fastball of any arm in this draft class. He cruises along at 92-95 mph, and can crank it up to 96-97 mph when he needs it. He’s also willing to take a couple ticks off now and then to create more movement. Gray is aggressive early in counts with fastball and will take the quick outs. He’s not infatuated with the strikeout.

Curveball

The curveball is a true plus pitch for Gray that is a plus-plus offering on occasion. He locates it well and is comfortable going to it in any situation. He gets hard, downer 12-6 action and a lot of swings and misses. He’ll run it down onto the shoe tops of lefties and even over the inside corner on righties at times. This is a dominant strikeout pitch at any level of competition.

Changeup

Gray has three at least average offerings and the changeup is part of that mix. He throws it at 84-88 mph and sells his arm action well. The differential is not huge and it’s not a swing and miss pitch at the pro level. But, he locates it well and mixes it to lefties well enough to keep them off his fastball. This is a potential average pitch at the Major League level.

Summation

Height is the only thing keeping Gray from being a lock for the top 6-7 picks in this draft class. You do have to worry about his size and whether he’ll be durable as a pro. But, he has the three pitch mix including two plus pitches and above average command to be front end starter.

Draft Projection: Top 12 Picks


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