Brock Porter is the highest-ranked pitcher coming into the 2022 Draft. The top pitcher, according to MLB.com, is ready to be selected in the top ten in the upcoming draft. The 6′ 4″ right-hander comes from St. Mary Prep in Orchard Lake, in suburban Detroit, Michigan. He is listed as the No.11 prospect who comes with some impressive pitching statistics.
Porter won the Gatorade Player of the Year with Michigan last year and the national award for top high school player this year. He finished his senior year with an overall 9-0 record and a 0.29 ERA. Overall he had 109 strikeouts and only 23 walks in 109 innings. He has allowed just two extra-base hits in the past two seasons.
Porter held a competition to a ridiculous .056 batting average. He threw a no-hitter on 47 pitches, striking out 11 batters. He already entered his senior season in 2022 as a top pitching prospect for the upcoming draft, and his play held that position.
Porter has a high potential as a pitcher with a big-time elite fastball. That fastball consistently hits 95-97 MPH and occasionally hits triple digits. His fastball also has an excellent spin, which some scouts say is MLB-ready now. He has shown that he can keep his velocity and command in check, something scouts like to see as it leads to pitching long into games.
Porter matches his fastball with a changeup. He throws his changeup in the low 80s with similar arm action to his fastball, which also makes that pitch spin. Added to his arsenal is an above-average slider that hits the mid-80s as well.
While strong, the command of his slider is still a work in progress. He needs more consistency from that pitch. His curveball, which is behind the rest of the pitches in his selection, also needs work if he wants to add it to his arsenal.
Because of his age, how he handles professional baseball hitters is still a question, but that is something only time will tell. Currently, Porter has committed to Clemson. Will he decide to use that as leverage when it comes to signing? It is expected he could get anywhere from $6 to $8 million as a signing bonus if he bypasses college. If he decides to attend Clemson, he will gain more experience while developing physically and as a ball player. He would be draft-eligible again in 2024 as a sophomore.
Another issue, again based on his age, is that he has faced only high school competition. While he has done well, if he signs a deal, he will be assigned to the minor leagues and meet the best players he will have ever seen. It will be intriguing to see how he will handle the greater competition. Plus, the adversity of what it takes to make it to the majors. Hopefully, Porter can get out of bad outings and return to pitch like the top-pitching prospect he is.
Added to that mental part of the game is dealing with fans. We know fans can be horrible to opposing players. Will he be able to block out the chatter—repeatedly hearing that he’s overrated, that he doesn’t pitch like a top prospect, or even the jabs at his money, getting that huge signing bonus only to throw poorly. It’s hard to deal with that when you’re used to it, but it still wears on mentally and can add stress.
MLB Player Comparison
A comparison of Porter’s style is similar to that of Cincinnati Reds pitcher Luis Castillo. Castillo has changed his pitch mix since coming into the league, and it currently looks identical to what Porter throws. The fastball-slider-changeup combo makes up a majority of his pitches. Porter is similar and has an even greater parity in his velocity between his pitches than those of Castillo.
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Players Mentioned: Luis Castillo