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David Bednar Scouting Report

Right-Handed Pitcher
San Diego Padres

Tool (PV/FV)
Notes & Comments
Fastball (55/60)
Straight fastball with occasional mid-90s giddyup behind it; a little bit of arm-side tail and a little bit of downward life/sink at times, but it’s insignificant/inconsistent and doesn’t consistently work to miss barrels. Generally good downhill plane on the pitch, though; pitches tall, with a good downward look to hitters and some deception in his fastball that explodes to the plate late at times. Velocity: 91-96.

Curveball (40/45)
11-to-5 curveball with a little bit of downward bite; a tight spinner at its best, the curve can flatten out on occasion when he doesn’t get on top/out front. Shows tendency to get around the pitch and cast it more than break it off, too; doing so causes it to lose bite and function more as a slurve. Probably should be thrown slightly harder; needs more consistent downward movement to really miss bats at higher levels, but he’s got some feel here to throw it for strikes early and bury it once ahead. Velocity: 74-77.

Splitter (35/40)
Splitter is thrown hard and tunnels well with the fastball, but it can hang and knuckle with no drop. Downward movement that does happen is typically subtle and small; lacks drop-off-the-table look that would really miss bats. Bednar appears to set splitter in hand and then adjusts out of it upon getting the sign, as expected from a guy with this pitch in his repertoire. Feel here to throw it for strikes; needs more work/some grip adjustments to really bring out wipeout movement with the bottom dropping out. Velocity: 80-84.

Command (40/45)
Control well ahead of command; he will pound the zone and challenge hitters, but he’s often inconsistent within strike zone and pitches will hit unintended targets side to side over the plate. Bednar likes to pound the arm-side corner with fastball; easier for him to get there than extend to glove side corner with consistent command; will probably prove tougher on RHH in time because of this natural ability to get the ball in on their hands. Both off-speed pitches can catch the plate consistently, but he lacks some of the feel to pinpoint them for strikes early in the count beyond being get-over pitches.

Shows ball very early on long back swing of arm after hand break; hitters, particularly LHH, will pick up early. Three-quarters release point with tall release and generally a moderate spin-off to the first base side upon follow-through. Generally does a good job staying tall and working downhill through release, but fails to finish pitches and shows tendency to remain tall even after release without a full follow-through. Tendency to overthrow for velocity; lots of misses up in the zone and up out of it, especially with fastball, trying to show off power arm but often missing up.

Works from the first base side of the rubber. Unfortunately, I don’t have times on him with runners on, but he’s slow/methodical to the plate through his delivery; doesn’t use much of a slide step with runners on. Physical kid with a strong lower half and thick frame listed at 6’1″, 205 lbs., but he’s more or less tapped out physically with very little, if any, room to further grow into his body. At final form; probably durable enough as is in a relief role, but somewhat undersized for ideal short-inning/high-leverage stint arm. Will have to work hard to maintain good weight as he ages.

OFP (45 FV)
For the optimistic among us, there’s some sneaky velocity here along with the makings of two distinct off-speed pitches that could become near-average with a bit of development. For me, it’s likely David Bednar tops out in a set-up role at ceiling (45 FV), with a far more likely floor coming as an up-and-down relief arm who will work predominantly middle innings in the bullpen for the San Diego Padres in the coming seasons (35-40 FV). Has yet to see Double-A in his career, but after spending the fall of 2017 pitching in the Arizona Fall League, there’s an outside shot David Bednar could see big league time in 2018; I personally think it’s more likely he reaches The Show in 2019 and works modest innings in low-leverage situations as an up-and-down roster filler to be called up and recalled as needed. MLB ETA: 2019.

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Bobby DeMuro

Bobby DeMuro is the founder of Baseball Census, the author of We Is Blaze, (obviously) a fan of minor league baseball, and an unlikely expert on the animated classic TV show King Of The Hill. For more on Bobby and the personal, human side of this site, follow him on Twitter and Facebook: @BobbyDeMuro.

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