Scout's View: Breaking Down 2022 MLB Draft Prospect RHP Dylan Lesko
As we approach the 2022 draft, we’re enlisting the help of former player, coach and scout Tom Lipari to break down some of the top draft prospects in the class. Lipari played collegiate ball at New Orleans, then played nine 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.
As we currently stand in the middle of March, prep Georgia righthander Dylan Lesko sits as the consensus top pitching prospect in the 2022 draft class. Lesko ranks as the No. 6 prospect on our draft board, was named the Gatorade Player of the Year in 2021 as an underclassman and is committed to Vanderbilt.
Currently, he’s the favorite to be the first pitcher selected in the draft and combines a special combination of pitchability, power and projection. We had our resident scouting expert, Tom Lipari, watch the video below (though he wasn’t limited to this video exclusively) and break down Lesko.
This footage of Lesko is from last summer.
Physicality: Ideal pitcher's frame at 6-foot-3, 195 pounds. Loose, athletic, fluid movements. Proportioned. Additional size, strength coming. Plenty of physical projection left.
Delivery: Pitches with a semi wind-up (SWU) delivery to high, three-quarter (H3Q) slot. Loose, quick arm with some wrap in take back. Consistently on time at front foot strike. Lands just a touch across body. Proper extension out front.
Fastball: Life out of hand, especially up in the zone, 94-96 mph, up to 97. Love the angle, down/run, especially to lefthanded hitters. Will even show some cut on his four-seam, mostly to righthanded hitters. Around the zone with it. Difficult to square up.
Changeup: Plus-plus feel for 82-84 mph changeup. Doesn’t alter delivery or arm action. Sells it extremely well. Turns it over. Comes out like his fastball before becoming a victim of strong downward fading action that dives away from lefthanded hitters. Has the ability to throw anytime in the count.
Curveball: Doesn’t use it much and doesn’t have to—right now. When he does throw it, spin can vary from a true 12-to-6 break to more slurvish. Proper break is present, ranging from 75-79 mph. Will be a pitch that will need continued development and repetition as he moves forward.
Command: Around the zone with all pitches. Like any amateur, can always be fine tuned which will happen with experience and development. The various movement on his fastball around the zone is a strength. Will not have to be a “pinpoint” guy.
Makeup: Carries himself like a pro. Focused. Competes. Shows the ability to make pitch-to-pitch adjustments when need be.
Outlook: Tremendous prep talent that doesn’t come around often. Has the makings to be a special pro athlete. With continued growth and development, has the potential to be a top-of-the-rotation type arm.