Pittsburgh Pirates: Three High School Pitching Draft Prospects to Watch

(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
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Pittsburgh Pirates
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RHP Walter Ford

Walter Ford is one of the youngest players in this year’s draft. He just turned 17 back on December 28th and reclassified in order to enter this year’s draft. Ford could end up in the second round of the draft next season to the Pirates as he brings a three-pitch combo with all offerings playing at an average or better level.

Ford’s four-seam fastball already sits in the low-90’s and tops out at 97 MPH. It’s a well above average pitch that could end up in the upper-90’s once he’s done developing. He also throws a low-80’s slider that he uses to get many of his swings and misses on. Although FanGraphs gives him an above-average curveball, MLB Pipeline’s third offering for Ford is a change-up. It’s a pitch he has a feel for but needs to sharpen up. Two things that help his stuff play up just a bit are his athleticism and control. His control stands around average right now, but his athleticism helps him repeat his delivery with ease.

Still, as stated earlier, Ford is the youngest player in this year’s draft, just turning 17 a few months ago. Ford has a very projectable frame, standing at 6’2″, 195 pounds. He’ll definitely add a few pounds of muscle by the time he’s 20-years-old. That should also help him add some velo and durability.

Next. 2022 Prospect Outlook: Pitcher Austin Roberts. dark

Ford could end up going early in the first round, depending on how much scouts get to see him in spring and summer this year. However, right now, he’d very possibly be available when the Pittsburgh Pirates are on the clock.