Mariners News: M’s Select HS Pitcher Nick Neidert in 2015 Draft


After signing Nelson Cruz in the off-season, the Seattle Mariners did not have a first-round pick in tonight’s Major League Baseball Draft.

Commissioner Rob Manfred (Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports).

However, in the second round, with the 60th overall pick, the Mariners selected high school pitcher Nick Neidert out of Peachtree Ridge HS in Georgia.

The following profile on the RHP comes from

“Following a star turn at the World Wood Bat Association World Championship in October and a fine start to his senior season, Neidert was pushing to go as high as the supplemental first round. Then he came down with elbow tendinitis, which affected his stuff and sidelined him toward the end of the season. When he was fully healthy, Neidert was pitching at 92-94 mph and peaking at 96 with his lively fastball. He has an advanced changeup for a high schooler, maintaining his arm speed and imparting some fade when he throws it. He did a better job of spinning his curveball, though some scouts wonder if he might be better off throwing a slider. Neidert lacks ideal size at 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds, though he generates his velocity with athleticism and arm speed rather than effort. The South Carolina recruit is a good athlete who lives around the strike zone.”

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Obviously a few things stand out here:

1. He throws hard. 92-94 in high school? Topping out at 96? That’s a good number to hit. You can project as a starter or a reliever with that velocity. The Mariners like hard throwers, especially out of the bullpen from the right side. The more power arms in the system, the better.

2. His size. At 6’1, Neidert lacks the prototypical size. But then again, so did Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez and current star, although injured star, Marcus Stroman of the Blue Jays. If you can command the strike zone, and throw with velocity, it doesn’t matter how tall you are. At least not to me.

3. He has a changeup: The change is the hardest pitch to learn, especially for a high schooler. It’s encouraging to see a kid who throws that hard have the understanding that a change of speed is important. That can be the best offspeed pitch in a pitchers repertoire. If you have that early in your career, you can lessen the learning curve.

4. He’s had injury concerns. This is not what you want to hear, but as long as that tendinitis doesn’t turn into a bigger issue, it can be overcome. The professional medical staff of the Mariners will be a major asset.

The Mariners also have the 72nd pick.

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