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March 11, 2022 at 8:00 AM

Scouting Report Updates: Brendan Cellucci and other 2021 Greenville relievers part two


For the last few months, we've been updating the scouting reports of many players in the system. Over the next few weeks, we will highlight these updated reports. Today's update focuses on the second group of relievers who spent time in Greenville last year, led by left-hander Brendan Cellucci . These scouting reports are written by Director of Scouting Ian Cundall.

Physical Description: Tall left-hander with a strong frame. Minimal remaining projection.

Mechanics: Throws over the top. Max-effort delivery. Very quick arm. Stiff, vertical delivery. Medium leg kick. Rigid, deceptive arm action. Keeps arm behind before coming forward. Violent head whack, is looking at third base when he releases the ball. Falls off hard to the glove side.

Fastball: 93-95 mph. Tops out at 97. Live fastball that has shown the ability to miss bats. Ball jumps on hitters. In the early stages of developing command and control, both currently well-below average. Potential plus pitch.

Curveball: 83-86 mph. Short, vertical break. Plus spin rate. At its best, shows depth and bite. Still developing consistency with the pitch. Potential above-average offering.

Changeup: 85-87 mph. Pitch shows late drop. Did not throw in outing scouted in 2021. Will flash average potential.

Career Notes: Struggled as a freshman at Tulane, but emerged as the team's closer late in his sophomore season. Pitched in 1 game in the Cape Cod League in 2018. Signed following his sophomore season to an over-slot deal. Participated in Fall Instructional League in 2019 and 2020. Participated in 2022 Winter Warm-Up.

Summation: Potential up-and-down emergency reliever. Ceiling of an MLB middle reliever. Gap between from current projection and ceiling is driven by concerns about delivery and command and control profile. Struggles to throw strikes and current command is poor. Low floor, decent chance he will not throw enough strikes to get out of the minors. Pitch data is very impressive and grades out well in models. Both fastball and breaking ball have above-average spin rates.
Physical Description: Athletic right-hander with an average build. No remaining projection.

Mechanics: Throws from a three-quarters arm slot. Starts on the third-base side, but slides to the middle in his wind-up. Starts with his hands by his waist and brings them down and up before coming forward. Rhythmic delivery that he repeats well. Short arm action with a stab behind. Hides the ball well.

Fastball: 91-93 mph. Tops out at 94. Pitch shows late life. Solid command and control profile. Throws a lot of strikes and has already shown the ability to locate. Potential average offering.

Slider: 81-83 mph. 10-to-4 shape with depth at its best. Advanced feel and confidence in the pitch. Throws often against both right- and left-handed hitters. Can roll to the plate on occasion when he does not snap it off. Potential average offering.

Changeup: 80-83 mph. Shows late drop. Clear third pitch, primarily used against left-handed hitters. Potential fringe-average offering.

Career Notes: Before signing as an undrafted free agent, had committed to returning to Alabama in 2021 and using his extra year of eligibility for the canceled 2020 season, then planned to enlist in the U.S. Navy. Apparently missed 2016 season for unknown reasons.

Summation: Potential solid organizational swingman. Capable of pitching in short relief or multi-inning roles. Ceiling of an emergency up-and-down arm. Strong pitchability and feel. Throws strikes, works quick. Type of pitcher every organization needs.

Physical Description: Right-hander with a muscular frame. No remaining projection.

Mechanics: Throws from a three-quarters arm slot. Starts on the first base side of the rubber. Delivery has effort. Starts with a wide base. Lot of moving parts in delivery. Quick, live arm. Long arm action behind. Deception in delivery.

Fastball: 92-94 mph. Tops out at 96 mph. Pitch jumps on batters who do not seem to get a good look at it. High spin rate and shows swing-and-miss potential. Pitch has late, rising action; has shown the ability to pitch with it up in the zone. Command and control need work, as does consistency from outing to outing. Potential plus offering.

Slider: 84-86 mph. Long, 10-to-4 break, generally. Shape will vary as he adds or subtracts velocity. Will drop arm slot and get on the side of the pitch too often. Potential average offering.

Career Notes: Grew up a Red Sox fan. Entered college at 240 pounds, but lost a lot of weight and now is extremely muscular, getting into fitness enough that he maintains a personal fitness account on social media. Pitched first two seasons at Daytona Beach Community College. Acquired from the Cubs as the PTBNL from the Josh Osich trade.

Summation: Potential priority organizational reliever. Ceiling of an MLB middle-reliever. Has a pretty wide gap between what he projects as right now and his ceiling. Fastball has significant major league potential, possessing many of the traits teams look for. Hitters have a lot of trouble picking it up. Has shown the ability to throw it up in the zone. Secondary offerings lag behind and development of his slider will determine his long-term potential. Slider needs refinement and improved consistency, as it does not have the bat-missing ability of his fastball and is not a pitch hitters need to worry about right now. Intriguing player to get in the pitching development system and work with.

Physical Description: Undersized left-hander with a developed lower half. Has added significant weight since signing. Minimal remaining projection.

Mechanics: Throws from a low three-quarters arm slot, setting up on the third base side of the rubber. Short, compact delivery with effort that he struggles to repeat. Medium leg kick. Trunk twist and stab and hook behind. Quick arm action coming forward.

Fastball: 92-94 mph. Pitch has life and has shown bat-missing ability in the low minors. Well-below-average control and command. Potential average offering due to concerns with long-term command and control profile.

Curveball: 79-81 mph. 1-to-7 break. Feel and confidence in pitch. Does a good job snapping it off with depth. Throws often, in any count, and works it in and out of the zone. Potential above-average offering.

Changeup: 83-84 mph. On the firm side. Tends to telegraph by slowing his arm down. Potential below-average offering.

Career Notes: Pitched in the Venezuelan Development Program in winter 2017. After struggling in the rotation in 2017, has been much better in a relief role. Cut walk rate in 2019 but allowed a corresponding jump in hits. Had IL stints in 2019 of about two weeks for left biceps tendinitis and about three weeks for left shoulder impingement syndrome. Pitched for Venezuela in the 2021 Americas Olympic Qualifier.

Summation: Projects as an organizational bullpen depth. Ceiling of an up-and-down reliever. Has shown significant bat-missing ability in the low minors and steady improvement year after year. Secondary pitches and command and control need refinement. Will show intriguing spin rates on fastball and slider.

Photo Credit: Brendan Cellucci and Oddainer Mosqueda by Kelly O'Connor, Casey Cobb by SoxProspects and Zach Bryant by Jerry Coli

Ian Cundall is Director of Scouting for SoxProspects.com. Follow him on Twitter @IanCundall.