Noah Schultz is a unique player of his own. He is the tallest player in the 2022 MLB draft. Schultz is the 6-foot-9 left-handed pitcher who is the 49th-best prospect, according to MLB.com. He is also challenging to figure out because he did not pitch very much in high school due to the pandemic. Then this past season, he missed almost the entire spring after contracting mononucleosis in March. Currently, he has committed to playing at Vanderbilt.
Schultz was Illinois’ number-one ranked senior in the preseason by the Prep Baseball Report. His fastball can reach in the 91-93 MPH range. At the Perfect Game All-American Classic in August of 2021, Schultz struck out two and did not allow a hit in an inning. Schultz is great against left-handed hitters with his slider. In addition, he also has a good feel for pitching and knows where to locate the ball in the strike zone. Scouts who saw him pitch at a pre-draft workout in 2022 say his slider and fastball have high spin rates. Schultz also knows how to throw strikes with no control or command concerns.
He also has a “slurvy” pitch. That pitch is gripped like a curve ball but thrown with a slider’s velocity. That pitch, when thrown correctly, can be successful in groundball outs. Schultz also has shown a good fading changeup in the low 80 MPH range.
Scouts would like to see Schultz add some more velocity to his fastball. He will also have to improve his changeup and slider to get right-handed hitters out consistently.
Furthermore, Schultz’s pitching was affected the last two years due to the pandemic and his injuries. He could head to college to further develop his skills, waiting two years to enter the draft again. It would allow teams a better look at what he can do. Wherever Schultz goes, another thing to consider is that only five pitchers in MLB history 6′ 9″ or taller have thrown 500 innings or more. That may open the possibility of Schultz transitioning to the bullpen once he develops his game.
Due to his size, Noah Schultz shows similarities to three different pitchers. The first is the 6′ 10″ Hall of Fame member and five-time Cy Young Award winner Randy Johnson. The “Big Unit” was integral in the World Series win with the Arizona Diamondbacks back in 2001. However, Schultz doesn’t match the power of Johnson, although the 18-year-old is much more advanced than Johnson. Another comparison that fits him closer would be the tall southpaw, 6′ 7″ Andrew Miller, who saved 36 games for the New York Yankees in 2015. Miller had a solid career as a starter and then a relief pitcher.
Schultz’s pitching style is similar to that of Tyler Glasnow, who’s 6′ 8″ of the Tampa Bay Rays. Though Glasnow is right-handed, he was a highly-touted pitcher out of high school and was ready to go to college before being drafted. He took the bonus and signed. Like Glasnow, Schultz has an effective fastball and slider.