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Jordan Hicks STL SP


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Forgive me if there's a thread, but I think this could be one of the big movers of the year. Two really interesting tidbits I picked up recently

 

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The Cardinals drafted right-handed starter Jordan Hicks in the third round in 2015 out of Cypress Creek High School in Houston and signed him for $600,000, slightly over slot, betting that an athletic high school pitcher with some arm strength would get better over time. He didn’t take the mound until 2016, and threw fairly well in two short-season stops -- scouts liked him more than the stat line would indicate. But this spring he has really taken off and looks primed for a big breakout in full-season ball.

Hicks hit 101 mph the outing before I saw him, but on Friday he threw all two-seamers at 94-97 with plus life, with one reading at 99 on my gun (possibly an error), with the ball seeming to explode in on right-handed batters’ hands. He paired it with a short slider at 83-85 that was at least a grade 60 pitch that day, and he flashed at least an average changeup, although he threw only a couple of them. His arm is very quick, and for as hard as he’s throwing, he doesn’t have much visible effort in his delivery.

 

The above is from Keith Law. Lotta boxes checked there. That's a description of a 70/80 level fastball with velocity and explosive movement. Pair that with a 60 breaker and 50 change, with easy velocity and minimal effort, and we have ourselves a solid starting pitcher prospect with a higher ceiling then mid rotation. The fastball speed represents a jump from previous years as well.

 

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TomBruno23 (RF): What's the outlook on Jordan Hicks?
Derrick Goold: Strong. Or, to borrow the word thrown around by Cardinals’ officials: “Bullish.” Hicks really stormed into consideration for the top 30 based on a few things: First, how he finished in the top 20 for different leagues this past year, and, second, how he was a player other teams showed interest in. Hard to get a better gauge of ability than the interest from other teams. His debut was delayed, but when he got into games he shined. A scout called his curveball a 70. Referred to it as “sick.” He’s got velocity, too, with sharp sink on the fastball. He’s a player that a former scouting director around here would talk about “dreaming on,” and he’d have every reason. Wouldn’t be a shock if he’s a top-tenner next year.

 

Next up is Derrick Gould of Baseball America. Aside from praising Hicks as a prospect to dream on and be in the cardinals top 10 next year, he says another scout referred to his curve as a 70. 

 

at this point, seeing as we have multiple scouts praising the breakout potential, and descriptions of plus plus pitches, I'm really ocnvicned Hicks is a top 100 prospect as of right now, with potential to be way higher. If these velocity gains are true, you're looks at the same skill set that had guys like Alex Reyes shoot up prospect lists a few years ago. Based on the early reports from this year and his age/level, this could be one of the big breakouts of the year.

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  • 4 months later...

Was a guy to watch to begin the season and he has lived up to the billing. Features a plus FB and curveball. Development hinges on command a change up  Have him in relief now due to an inning limit and is displaying a very heavy GB batted profile with 9k/9+ upside. Definitely a guy I like.

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  • 5 months later...

He’s most likely a reliever but good chance we find out this year and his upside as a starter is significant enough to speculate on compared to some boring starters. Fastball is pretty legit. Cardinals tend to do well with these guys. Definitley someone worth monitoring closely.

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  • 1 month later...

Hicks had an impressive 4 inning start vs. most of the Nationals regulars yesterday:

 

https://www.cbssports.com/fantasy/baseball/news/cardinals-jordan-hicks-stellar-showing-in-sunday-spot-start/

 

Tweets from Derek Shore @D_Shore23

Mo on Hicks: Mentioned how they dealt with strong armed right-handers - Rosenthal, Martinez, & Lynn. "We weren't afraid to bring these guys up & stick them in the 'pen to get their feet wet. If he can go down and do what he did today, he's going to move pretty quick." #STLCards

 

John Mozeliak on Jordan Hicks' ETA from FSM: "When you look at some at his age and where he's at, the important thing for him is to continue to develop. There's no doubt he's close." #STLCards

 

Impressive stuff from Jordan Hicks today against a potent Nationals lineup. On 41 pitches, he's through four one-hit frames with a pair of strikeouts and has induced six groundouts on the day. #STLCards

 

Jordan Hicks flashing that dynamic stuff today. According to @FSMidwest, he hit 99 mph on a practice pitch after being hit by come-backer. Touching 101 on the gun. #STLCards

 

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3 hours ago, crotchcrickets said:

He looked terrific.

 

Alot seem to think he will end up in the bullpen though.

 

 

 

Long term?

 

Cards like to use young SP in pen, but to make him future RP would be shame.

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For a guy that throws 100 mph his K rates are very mediocore aside from his stint in A+ (10.67 k rate).  On the other hand his GB rates are off the charts tremendous.  His GB rates for each team are 56.7 63.7 52.2 and 66.1  So the question to ask is he content with the GB over the K when he matches up against a hitter?

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He's gonna be closing games by June imo.

Even though I maintain he can be successful as a SP, they clearly think he can get important outs and opt not to waste 'bullets' in the minors. It's not a bad idea, per se, esp the way young arms are blowing out...but it will make things more challenging for him to develop/refine the secondaries and we run into the territory where he proves too valuable to remove from the 'fireman/closer type' role--ala what we saw with Rosie.

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1 hour ago, ST. STEVEN said:

He's gonna be closing games by June imo.

Even though I maintain he can be successful as a SP, they clearly think he can get important outs and opt not to waste 'bullets' in the minors. It's not a bad idea, per se, esp the way young arms are blowing out...but it will make things more challenging for him to develop/refine the secondaries and we run into the territory where he proves too valuable to remove from the 'fireman/closer type' role--ala what we saw with Rosie.

 

There's a good chance he's a bullpen guy from now on especially if he gets into high leverage situations like Trevor Rosenthal did. 

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