10 Performing Mid-Major Arms To Know
Tom Lipari played collegiate ball at New Orleans, then played five years professionally, in the Padres and Astros organizations as well as in Indy ball. He was a nine-year college coach and then spent seven years scouting for the Cardinals and is the signing scout for Paul DeJong, Mateo Gil, Luken Baker, Steven Gingery, Levi Prater and others.
After looking at 12 high-performing mid-major hitters a few weeks ago, we are turning our eyes to small school arms who are standing out.
The non-Power 5 pitchers below have separated themselves from their peers up to this point in the spring. Numerous others stood out, but for the sake of containing the list, we kept it to 10.
1. Luke Rettig, LHP, Lehigh (2022)
Key Stats: In eight starts, Rettig has a 0.98 ERA and has punched out 50 batters in 46 innings. Opposing batters are hitting a dismal .206 against him.
How He Gets It Done: The 6-foot-4 lanky lefty uses his deliberate delivery with a long, loose arm action to produce sneak on an 86-89 mph fastball. He mixes in a fading changeup and bigger-breaking slurve that both are giving opponents fits. Rettig has the ability to mix in any pitch at any time and is efficient in his work. Look for the success to continue for the Bioengineering major.
2. William Privette, RHP, College of Charleston (2023)
Key Stats: In 13 relief appearances Privette has posted a 1.06 ERA with six saves. He’s thrown 34 innings, struck out 45 batters and walked 12. Opponents have hit just .189 against him.
How He Gets It Done: The 6-foot-6 righty attacks with a downhill 89-92 mph fastball that has heavy life. He gets his swings and misses with the fastball up in the zone and mostly attacks hitters with his heater, but also mixes in a true downer breaking ball at 78 mph.
3. Trevor Nicholson, LHP, Eastern Illinois (2022)
Key Stats: Nicholson is 4-0 with a 1.74 ERA over 41.1 innings. He has struck out 64 batters and walked 15, while opponents are hitting just .185 against him with seven extra-base hits.
How He Gets It Done: He is a pitchability lefty with plus feel for a fastball/changeup mix he uses against righthanded hitters. His fastball sits 87-89 mph, while his changeup is a firm pitch that sits 82-83 mph. He keeps both down in the zone consistently and sells the changeup extremely well. Nicholson has both a slider and a curveball he will use to put away lefthanded hitters and both pitches are effective.
4. Hunter Loyd, RHP, East Tennessee State (2022)
Key Stats: Loyd is 3-1 with a 2.58 ERA over 38.1 innings. He has 50 strikeouts and 16 walks and opponents are hitting just .205 against him.
How He Gets It Done: Loyd has a plus slider in the 84-86 mph range that is a putaway pitch. The hard three-quarter breaking pitch presents itself as a fastball out of his hand and he complements the breaking ball with a 90-92 mph fastball. He competes very well in the zone.
5. Breon Pooler, RHP, Alabama State (2022)
Key Stats: Pooler is 6-0 after eight starts with a 2.25 ERA. He has punched out 48 batters in 48 innings and opposing batters are hitting just .213 against him with six extra-base hits.
How He Gets It Done: Pooler is a very loose, athletic righthander at 6-foot-1, 190 pounds. He attacks with a quick, loose arm and throws a low-90s fastball with plenty of life. With a curveball and a changeup he commands well, Pooler has a solid three-pitch mix that causes fits for opposing bats.
6. Eric Yost, RHP, Northeastern (2023)
Key Stats: Yost has posted a 1.31 ERA while splitting time as a starter and a reliever over 34.1 innings. He has 30 strikeouts and 10 walks, while opponents are hitting just .193 against him.
How He Gets It Done: The 6-foot-1, 190-pound righthander attacks with a firm 91-94 mph fastball, touching 95 frequently, with a sharp, 81-84 mph putaway slider. With Cape Cod League experience already, Yost brings mound maturity beyond his sophomore class status.
7. Will Brian, LHP, Eastern Kentucky (2022)
Key Stats: Brian is 1-0 over 17 relief appearances and 18.2 innings, with 26 strikeouts and nine walks. He has 11 saves and opponents are hitting just .052 against him.
How He Gets It Done: Brian is tied as the leader in the country with 11 saves and is a strong-framed lefthander who comes at you with an over-the-top slot and a 90-93 mph fastball. He also throws a sharp, 11-to-5 breaking ball and is effectively wild in the zone, dishing out plenty of uncomfortable at-bats.
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8. Nolan DeVos, RHP, Davidson (2022)
Key Stats: DeVos is 5-1 over eight starts and 47 innings with a 1.91 ERA and 68 strikeouts to just 12 walks. Opponents are hitting just .193 against him.
How He Gets It Done: While more or less posting video game numbers, DeVos presents a live fastball that frequents the top of the zone with late cut at 90-93 mph. It’s a very difficult pitch to square up and hitters find themselves behind in the count immediately. He's on point with his 83-85 mph slider, which has traditional break. He’s very efficient in the zone. He’ll show a changeup to lefthanded hitters, and while it serves a purpose, it’s his clear third pitch.
9. Cole Kitchen, RHP, Santa Clara
Key Stats: Kitchen is 3-2 with a 4.09 ERA over 44 innings, but he has racked up 68 strikeouts while walking just 18.
How He Gets It Done: Kitchen is a strong-framed 5-foot-11, 200-pound righthander who attacks with a traditional fastball/slider mix. He creates good angle on a 91-93 mph fastball, which presents itself as firmer, and his money pitch is a 76-79 mph slider. Kitchen has the ability to drop the slider in for strike one and bury it when ahead in counts for the punchout. He has a mature pitching approach, loves to compete and has that classic “bulldog” demeanor on the mound.
10. Shemar Page, RHP, Grambling
Key Stats: Page has a 2.25 ERA over eight starts and 52 innings, while also striking out 80 batters and walking 25. Opponents are hitting just .183 against him, while at the same time he leads the team with a .377 average as a hitter.
How He Gets It Done: The veteran righty carries an ultra-quick arm and produces life on a low-90s fastball. He has two breaking balls in his arsenal: a true 12-to-6 curveball with depth and a late-breaking three-quarter slider that eliminates righthanded hitters when he’s ahead in the count. He’s a catalyst for the Tigers on both sides of the ball.