Welcome back to LWOS 2016 MLB Draft Coverage, the column that brings you player profiles for the next crop of professional baseball players that are likely to be selected in the upcoming draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow us on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical profiles and scouting reports. Click here to check out our complete coverage of the 2016 MLB Draft. Last Word On Sports is your new headquarters for all things 2016 MLB Draft!
School: Barnegat High School (Barnegat, New Jersey)
Jason Groome 2016 MLB Draft Profile
As it stands right now, Jason Groome is the favorite to be selected number one overall in June’s draft. A New Jersey native, Groome pitched for Barnegat High School in New Jersey, and then spent his junior year pitching at IMG academy in Florida. Coupled with an impressive summer, Groome rose quickly to the top of many teams’ draft boards. Massive in size and athletic in nature, Groome sports a rocket for an arm, and touches 96 MPH on the radar gun with his fastball. His curveball sits in the mid-70s with tremendous depth, and scouts even believe that it can improve further in the minor leagues.
The Barnegat left-hander will probably need a sizable amount of time to develop in the minor leagues and could be considered a high-risk/high-reward top pick. Tread carefully when eyeing left-handed fireballers at the high school level, especially considering the Tommy John epidemic going around. In another year, Groome may not have risen so high on the draft board, but given this year’s pool of players, it seems that the 6’6″ lefty is the most talented player in this year’s draft.
- Fastball reaches 96
- Left-handed starter
- Curveball in the 70s with strong depth and finish
- Massive frame
- High level of athleticism
- Relatively easy delivery
- Potential to develop more physically (will not be 18 until August)
- Tough to gamble on a hard throwing lefty that needs four to five years of seasoning
- Benefiting from a weaker draft class
- Average changeup at best
MLB Comparison: Madison Bumgarner
Projected Pick Range: 1-5
Most Likely Landing Spot: Any team in the top five (Phillies, Reds, Braves, Rockies, Brewers)
Anytime you are compared to Madison Bumgarner you are doing something right. The Phillies are a ball club that has the chance to add a truly special player to their minor league system. The problem is that he’s at least four or five years away from helping them win. The surprisingly competitive Phillies might have their sights set on a player that can get to the Majors more quickly.
All teams in the top five are desperate for starting pitching and, in a year that is not sporting as much talent as years past, its a complete gamble as to where he could land. Probability favors Atlanta or Milwaukee, two teams that have openly acknowledged that they’re in the midst of a painfully long rebuilding process. However, a team as starved for starting pitching as the Rockies may make a play for the young left-hander in the three slot as well.
Main Photo via Youtube