Grant Holmes is now a Los Angeles Dodger. The team has long a history of drafting pitchers, and Logan White did not deviate from a pattern that has generated a great deal of success at the big league level. Keeping with tradition, the club drafted high school pitcher Holmes with the 22nd pick of the MLB First-Year Player Draft.
Holmes, out of Conway, South Carolina, is a 6-2, 190 pound right-handed pitcher with what many scouts believe is the best high school curveball in the entire draft. MLB.com rates his fastball and curveball as a 6 (on a 2-8 scale), while his control is rated as a 5 and his changeup is average at a 4.
The hard-throwing righty is considered strong and durable, throwing in the mid-90’s with the ability to touch up to 100 mph on his fastball. He describes himself as a bulldog – a comparison that Dodger fans will be happy to hear — because of his willingness to attack hitters and pound the strike zone.
There is no doubt that Holmes is an exceptional talent, but it may have been his atypical build that allowed him to slide to the Dodgers at 22. Former GM and current MLB Network analyst John Hart noted that Holmes would be a top-5 selection if he possessed the prototypical build for a pitcher.
Over the course of 40 high school innings, Holmes totaled 82 strikeouts while posting a 0.52 ERA and going 4-1.
When asked how he felt to have been chosen by the Dodgers, Holmes had this to say:
“It is a true blessing. I’m honored to be a Dodger and I’m ready to pitch.”
Holmes may be ready sooner rather than later, as most scouts see him as being more ready for the bigs than most high schoolers. This readiness comes at the sacrifice of long-term projectability, but it is hard to argue with White’s recent successes in the draft with hard-throwing high school pitchers.
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