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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Scouting Report, RHP Kris Medlen

The 24-year old Kris Medlen made his major league debut last year in May, after going 5-0 with a sub 1 ERA in AAA (he got the promotion before T Hanson). The converted college shortstop (drafted in the 10th round in 2006) worked exclusively out of the bullpen his first two years, but excelled in the Arizona Fall League and the Braves moved him to the starting rotation last year. He appeared in 37 games for the Braves last year, starting four games, and had a 4.26 ERA and 1.40 WHIP. He pitched versus the Mets three times in relief last year, throwing 5 1/3 shutout innings, allowing five hits and one walk, striking out five.

The 5'11" Medlen throws 90-94, but usually settles into 90-91 when he's starting. He features a plus change-up (81 mph), and also mixes in an average curve-ball (80 mph). His fastball and change-up have been very successful in the big leagues. His strikeout rates have been outstanding in the minors (10 K/9), and is 9.2 K/9 in the majors, while having decent walk rates (4.0 W/9 last year, but 1.2 W/9 this year). He has fly ball tendencies, and the scouts are worried that his diminutive frame will not be able to withstand the stresses of being a starting pitcher full-time. He has the upside of a #3/4 starter.

So far this year, he's made 13 relief appearances, and one start vs the Phillies. He's thrown 23 innings, allowed 25 hits and only three walks (outstanding) with 20 strike outs. His ERA is 2.35 and a 1.217 WHIP. Versus the Phillies he lasted 4 1/3 and allowed nine hits and one run, throwing 88 pitches.

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