John Lepore | June 8th, 2020
The Major League Baseball amateur draft will begin on June 10th at 7 pm ET. We continue our series of MLB draft profiles with the left-handed starter from Louisville, Reid Detmers.
Make sure to check out our other MLB Draft profiles here.
Reid Detmers, LHP, Louisville
2018 Stats: 18 G (8 GS), 55.2 IP, 4-2, 4.85 ERA, 1.455 WHIP, 69/34 K/BB rate
2019 Stats: 19 G (18 GS), 113.1 IP, 13-4, 2.78 ERA, 0.918 WHIP, 167/33 K/BB rate
2020 Stats: 4 GS, 22 IP, 3-0, 1.23 ERA, 1.000 WHIP, 48/6 K/BB rate
Detmers was born on July 8, 1999, and attended Glenwood High School in Illinois in his senior year after transferring from Nokomis. Detmers dominated with a 0.84 ERA and 153 strikeouts that year. He was committed to Louisville and although the Atlanta Braves drafted him in the 32nd round in 2017, he honored his commitment. Playing in the ACC, Detmers struggled a bit as a true freshman. He went to the Cape Cod League and tweaked his mechanics that summer.
Whatever he did, it paid off.
After taking over the Friday Night spot his sophomore year, Detmers set school records with 13 wins and 167 strikeouts and was named ACC Pitcher of the Year. He continued his dominance earlier this year. Before the COVID-19 shutdown, the lefty was 3-0 with a 1.23 ERA and a ridiculous 48/6 K/BB rate in just 22 innings. Detmers may not light up the radar gun but you can check out his stuff here…
Well if you watched the video, maybe you saw the same things I did. Detmers doesn’t blow people away as his fastball sits 90-93, but it plays up. He has great riding and tailing action away from righties. His curveball is his best pitch. Detmers throws it from the same release point as his heater and can drop it at 72 mph. The fact that he can throw the curve for strikes keeps hitters guessing and the 20 mph difference can make them look silly. His changeup is a solid third offering and he adds some sinking action to it.
His command and understanding of how to pitch are both top-notch. He has a strong and durable body. At 6’2 and 210 lbs with a little room to add strength, he should be able to handle 30-33 starts at the major league level. He has a simple delivery which is easily repeatable and is already in tune with his own mechanics. If Detmers can add some more spin and downward movement to his change, he could be a dominant force for years to come.
Detmers doesn’t have the best “stuff” in the draft. If he struggles with command he will get batted around the park. He won’t be able to get away with missing his spots as much as other starters and while he has three plus pitches, they play off of each other. If he loses command of one, it could prove costly to the effectiveness of his other pitches. Detmers already has a feel for pitching so these “weaknesses” shouldn’t be concerning. It may just be something to keep an eye on as he progresses through the minors to the higher levels.
Yes, I’m going to say it. If Detmers can improve his changeup to the point where it is an absolute out-pitch, his comp will be Clayton Kershaw. Crazy I know. Comparing someone to Kershaw is kind of tough. Detmers has a dominant curve and while his fastball isn’t quite peak Kershaw, it plays fast and has great movement. The Dodger lefty has always had an excellent slider as another out-pitch. Detmers could get there with his change and be an ace for the foreseeable future.
Draft Projection: Round 1, Pick 8: San Diego Padres
There will be a few bats gone at this point. Although I could see the Pittsburgh Pirates taking Detmers with the seventh pick, I think they will grab a bat like Zac Veen, Nick Gonzales, or Garrett Mitchell. Detmers landing in San Diego is a perfect spot. He will be in a pitcher’s park on an up-and-coming team. The Padres will have a nice rotation in a few years featuring Chris Paddack, Luis Patino, MacKenzie Gore, and Detmers. You can never have too much pitching and the Padres will be stocked.
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Main Credit Image: https://gocards.com/sports/baseball/roster/reid-detmers/11338