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Round One: Minnesota Twins Select Kyle Gibson

Kyle Gibson
Pos:  RHP
School:  U Missouri Columbia, MO
Born:  10-23-1987
Height:  6' 6"
Weight:  210 lbs
Bats:  Right
Throws:  Right

From's Draft Reports:  "Projectable as a front-of-the-rotation type...complete package of stuff, presence and command...low-90's fastball, hard slider and plus changeup..."

Focus Area
Fastball: Gibson's fastball sat comfortably in the 91-92 mph range and topped out at 93 mph.
Fastball movement: It had above-average sink, down in the zone. There wasn't much side-to-side movement.
Slider: He threw a hard, down slider in the 81-84 mph range.
Changeup: An above-average offering, he threw it a lot, in the 80-82 mph range.
Control: He had above-average command of all three pitches.
Poise: Kept his cool as others lost their heads in a dispute. Showed a competitive streak when he hit an opposing player with a purpose pitch.
Physical Description: Gibson is tall and skinny, walking the fine line between projectability and being too narrow-framed.
Medical Update: Healthy.
Strengths: A complete package of stuff, command and poise. He can throw all of his pitches for strikes at any point in the count.
Weaknesses: The breaking ball isn't quite as consistent as the fastball and change. His frame might be a little too narrow.
Summary: Gibson certainly looked the part of a top college starter in the early part of the season. He has three pitches he can throw for strikes in any count and he shows a lot of poise and a competitive streak on the mound. Scouts love his size at 6-foot-6, though some might worry he's a little too thin. Most look at his combination of stuff, command and mound presence and see a sure-fire first-round pick.

Selections from ESPN's Insider scouting report on Gibson:

Good, downhill-plane fastball...changeup and slider project as plus pitches, with the changeup better right now...command and control above of the better delieveries in the draft, but has a strong recoil...projects to be middle-rotation starter very quickly...

From Saber Scouting, a great site:

Physical Description - Perfect pitcher’s body. Ultra projectable, long legs. Thin as a rail, plenty of room to grow and bulk up. Square shoulders, looks like a coat hanger. Not yet physically mature. Built like a younger Mark Prior.

Fastball - Sits at 88-90, touches 91. There is plenty more to come. Huge projection, looks like he’s throwing much harder. Throws a heavy ball with good, late life. Easy mechanics makes the ball appear to be jumping out of his hand. Has command east to west but need to work down in the zone. Should soon be sitting 92-93 plus life, could dominate with fastballs down in the zone.

Slider - 80-83 hard slider with 10-4 break. Near unhittable when spotted against right-handers. Has trouble spotting vs. lefties. Plus pitch when located but he needs to find more consistency. Stays on top, rarely hangs it. Can throw for strikes and bury it also. Legitimate strikeout pitch.

Changeup - 79-81 MPH changeup is rarely used. Does not trust it and shows to be essentially a two-pitch pitcher. Very straight, this pitch needs a lot of work. Alters arm speed and lacks feel. He needs this pitch to combat lefties. Big hole in his arsenal.

Mechanics - Smooth, easy arm action, shouldn’t have serious arm problems. Very little effort. Has a pause in his delivery just before his release, allows his arm to catch up. Drifts out over the rubber, weight leaks forwards, costs him a few ticks of his velocity. Doesn’t drive with his legs, relies on his fast arm. Throws over the top, creating good downward action. No windup.

Notes - Not a pitcher at this stage, more of a thrower. Projection is key. Needs to get stronger. Natural movement keeps him away from the middle of the plate. Doesn’t look like a natural athlete, awkward fielding his position. Likes to work insider. Easy delivery appears to lull hitters and makes his fastball more effective.

Adjusted Overall Future Potential: 63

Present Group: P, Future Group: A-

Projected Role: #2 starter

Draft Projection: Top Ten Picks (’09)

Ratings from The Baseball Cube:

Control:  89
K-Rating:  98
Efficiency:  92

Pitching Statistics

2007 UMO Big12 19 - NCAA 8 3 4.12 28 2 0 0 7 67.2 62 34 31 19 77 8.2 --- 2.5 10.2 1.20
2008 UMO Big12 20 - NCAA 9 4 3.84 19 12 2 0 2 86.2 86 43 37 23 96 8.9 --- 2.4 10.0 1.26