MINNEAPOLIS — Southern California typically has a good number of intriguing prep lefthanders and the 2013 draft class will be no exception.
One of those players will be Chris Kohler from Los Osos High in Rancho Cucamonga.
On the second day of the Perfect Game National Showcase in the Metrodome, Kohler showed a lot of potential. He has a lean, athletic 6-foot-3, 190-pound frame. He has a smooth, easy delivery, which helps him fill up the strike zone and he pitches with a quick tempo.
Kohler throws three pitches—a fastball in the 87-89 mph range, a circle changeup between 78-80 mph and a 12-6 curveball in the 72-73 range.
“I pitched pretty good and I felt pretty good,” Kohler said after his outing. “I was stoked and was excited. I felt pretty good and I guess it went great.”
Kohler has been playing baseball his whole life, but only really started focusing on pitching full-time about two years ago. He is committed to Southern California.
“I’ve been working on my changeup a lot lately and that’s something that’s helped a lot,” Kohler said. “Just working on throwing it for more strikes and working to get movement to get it to tail away and to drop.”
Like the Reds second-round pick this year, shortstop Tanner Rahier, Kohler has played in the ABD Spring League for the past two years. As he continues on the showcase circuit and into next spring, he wants to improve all aspects of his game.
“I’m just trying to gain some velocity on my fastball and get my changeup better and my curveball more bite,” Kohler said. “I just want to work on all my pitches and get stronger.”
• In addition to Kohler, lefthander Stephen Gonsalves from Cathedral Catholic High in San Diego also stood out. Gonsalves has a lean, projectable build at 6-foot-5 and 190 pounds. His fastball sat in the 89-91 mph range and he showed a nice, athletic delivery while mixing in a 70-71 mph curveball and an occasional changeup around 76 mph. Gonsalves and Kohler were teammates at PG National, just like they were teammates last fall with the Red Sox scout team.
• Righthander Brett Morales from King High in Tampa was the most impressive pitcher of the day. With an athletic, 6-foot-2, 185-pound build, Morales pounded the strike zone with all of his pitches. He threw his fastball in the 90-92 mph range, topping out at 93, and mixed in a very good 78-79 mph changeup and a mid-70s 12-6 curveball.
• Outfielder Austin Meadows from Grayson (Ga.) High showed why he is one of the top prospects in this year’s class. He hasn’t played a game yet at this event, but ran a 6.31-second 60-yard dash and showed an excellent lefthanded swing in batting practice, lacing plenty of line drives and several towering home runs.
• Another prospect from Georgia who really stood out in his workouts today was third baseman Clint Frazier from Loganville (Ga.) High. Frazier, who hit 24 home runs last season, showed a nice, balanced swing with power potential to all fields. He showed above-average arm strength and also flashed some wheels, running a 6.45-second 60-yard dash.