- Full name Wesley Mitchell Obermueller
- Born 12/22/1976 in Cedar Rapids, IA
- Profile Ht.: 6'2" / Wt.: 210 / Bats: R / Throws: R
- School Iowa
- Debut 09/20/2002
Drafted in the 2nd round (58th overall) by the Kansas City Royals in 1999 (signed for $400,000).
View Draft ReportScouts also aren't sure what to make of 6-foot-3, 195-pound RHP Wes Obermueller, a converted shortstop who struggled on the mound in his first extended trial at pitching. He was hit hard and demonstrated little feel for his new role. He's also almost 23, a little old to be changing jobs. He's intriguing because he has an above-average fastball (92-94 mph) and an ideal pitcher's build with a loose arm.
Organization Prospect Rankings
Often talked about in the same breath as Ian Ferguson because they posted similar numbers in 2002, Obermueller possesses better overall stuff but lacks Ferguson's feel for pitching. Obermueller had shoulder surgery in 2000, experienced more shoulder soreness in 2001 and wasn't ready to resume a full workload until last year. Getting more frequent work allowed him to improve his delivery. Drafted as a college senior, Obermueller was primarily an outfielder at Iowa. His repertoire is average across the board with the exception of his slider, which has developed into a plus pitch. Obermuller throws 86-92 mph with average command and enjoys success working the inside half of the plate. He also uses a changeup. Though his slider rates as his best pitch, Obermueller doesn't have much success putting hitters away with it or any other pitches. Developing a knockout pitch and maintaining a more consistent arm slot--he often drifts too high with his release point in a quest for more movement on his pitches--rank atop Obermuelller's to-do list if he's to push his way into Kansas City's rotation or bullpen in 2003.
One of the most appealing things about Obermueller when the Royals drafted him was that he had been primarily an outfielder in college, meaning he had limited mileage on his arm and was less of an injury risk. But he spent most of 2000, his first full season as a pitcher, on the sidelines. Obermueller's mechanics got out of whack in spring training, leading to shoulder tendinitis. He didn't appear in a game until May 27, and after just seven outings he had to be shut down for a month. He made one final start at the end of July, then was diagnosed with a partially torn labrum in his shoulder, which necessitated surgery. When healthy, Obermueller throws in the low 90s and can reach 96 mph. He also has a curveball and changeup that project as major league average, and he hasn't had any difficulty throwing strikes. Once he returns in 2001, his biggest concerns will be getting a sounder delivery and more experience.