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Alex Meyer #72 – 2013 Top 100

Written By on 11th March, 2013

#72 Alex Meyer (Starting Pitcher[R])

Minnesota Twins

22 25 25 129.0 97 6 9.70 3.14 2.93 2.81

Date of Birth: January 3rd, 1990(age 23)
Origin: 1st Round Pick(#23 overall) in 2011 out of the University of Kentucky
Height: 6’9″
Weight: 220
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Chris Blessing: The 23rd pick of the 2011 draft, Meyer made his professional baseball debut by splitting the season between Class A Hagerstown of the South Atlantic League and High Class A Potomac of the Carolina League, both affiliates of the Washington Nationals.  During the this past offseason, Meyer was traded to the Minnesota Twins, straight up, for major league outfielder Denard Span.

A 6’9’’ product out of the University of Kentucky, Meyer held his own in his debut in full season ball.  He did what you’d expect an older, recently drafted first round pick to do: he dominated.  Over 25 starts across two levels, Meyer proved difficult to hit, only allowing 6.8 Hits per nine innings.  Meyer was able to do this with a mid 90′s fastball, a sharp slider and a hard changeup.  The consensus is that none of his offerings present as plus due to below average command. However, each pitch has some swing and miss possibility.  A projection of a 2-3 starter seems to jive with Meyer. But issues with his command may push him to the late innings as a reliever.

Jeff Reese: As with all incredibly tall pitchers – Meyer is 6-foot-9!! – mastering the coordination of that large frame is often a daunting task that sometimes comes later in their development. I had Alex Meyer pegged as a reliever for the majority of his career at Kentucky, but the mechanical progress that has been made since his sophomore season has me doubting that prognosis. The stuff is electric and the control has gradually become less of an issue.

Indeed, the control was statistically acceptable during his first season of pro ball – 3.1 BB/9 over 129 innings between A & high-A. His stuff is loud enough where mastering his command is not completely essential to him remaining a starter. Just being in the general desired vicinity with the steep, lively mid 90s fastball and consistently throwing that wipeout slider will make up for the lack of precision. Reports that I received from his end of the season stint in Potomac were positive, and I am now on board.

Don Olsen: Meyer was one of my favorites of his junior draft class, because of a blend of fastball and slider that was, in my opinion, the best 1-2 punch in college that season.  It is still there, but not much else is there with it. This summer between reports and what I witnessed, the growth of the change up has not come along as smoothly as I had hoped.  There’s reasons to think that it could be at least an average offering, but right now it’s well short of that.

He is never going to be a pinpoint control guy, but big guys like Meyer take time to fully refine mechanically and gain a consistent release point.  He should get a long leash to show that the third pitch can be serviceable; with the ability to properly harness and locate his stuff, his offerings will improve.  At worst, Meyer’s height, plane, and nasty movement on the fastball and slider will make him a back of the bullpen arm for years to come.

Fantasy Outlook by Chris Blessing:
Meyer went from an organization that promotes their prospect rather aggressively to an organization that likes to take it’s time developing it’s talent.  His timeline to the majors may have been extended as a result.  His history of command and control may limit his value, especially if those problems push him to relief.

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