With the 2017 Draft fast approaching (Monday to Wednesday on MLB Network and MLB.com), we take a closer look at the top prospects in this year's class.Name: Kyle WrightPosition: RHPSchool: VanderbiltRank on Draft Top 200: 3DOB: 10/2/1995Bats: R Throws: RHeight: 6' 4" Weight: 220 lbs.Top 20 Draft Prospects profilesTools
With the 2017 Draft fast approaching (Monday to Wednesday on MLB Network and MLB.com), we take a closer look at the top prospects in this year's class.
Name: Kyle Wright
Rank on Draft Top 200: 3
Bats: R Throws: R
Height: 6' 4" Weight: 220 lbs.
Top 20 Draft Prospects profiles
(Future grades on 20-80 scouting scale)
:: 2017 MLB Draft coverage ::
Games started: 15
IP: 96 2/3
Opp. batting avg.: .210
Vanderbilt has had seven pitchers taken in the first round of the past 10 Drafts, and Wright should join David Price, Casey Weathers, Mike Minor and Carson Fulmer as a top-10 selection in June. Undrafted in 2014 out of Buckhorn High (New Market, Ala.), where he played for his father, Roger, he was the Commodores' most reliable reliever as a freshman and most consistent starter as a sophomore. This spring, he has cemented himself as the best college right-hander available and a potential No. 1 overall choice.
As Wright has gotten bigger and stronger in college -- he has grown an inch and added 40 pounds -- his velocity has improved from 87-90 mph in high school to 91-94, with a high of 97. His best secondary pitch is a hard curveball that he employs against left-handers, and he mixes in a harder slider/cutter against righties. Wright is also developing a solid changeup.
Wright's stuff could continue to get better, because unlike most top college pitching prospects, he still has a good deal of projection remaining. With his athleticism and arm action, he should have solid control and at least average command when he's fully developed, though he has battled the strike zone more than expected as a junior. Wright will be a frontline starter if he can master the location of his pitches.
MLB comp: A more physical Kris Benson
Fun fact: Wright's favorite movies are Division III: Football's Finest and Billy Madison, his favorite TV shows are The Walking Dead and Family Guy, and his favorite actor is Adam Sandler. If there were a movie about Kyle Wright, he says Channing Tatum would play him.
He said it: "The crowd was fantastic. I really try to feed off that. When you're going well, it's fun to play baseball. Sometimes I don't even know that I (get visibly excited on the mound), it just kind of happens."
-- After shutting out Florida and striking out 13 in front of a sold-out home crowd on April 14
They said it: "He is a combination of athletic ability, a special arm, ball skills and mentality all rolled together. We have been able to rely on him in tough situations, which he has thrived upon. He loves the arena of competition."
-- Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin
David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler.