Oklahoma right Hander Jason Hursh was teh Braves first round draft pick Thursday night. Credit graphic created by Fred Owens

First Look – Braves Draft Jason Hursh

The Braves used their first pick to take a BIG arm, Jason Hursh a 6’ 1”, 197 pound right hander from Carrolton, Texas out of Oklahoma State.. Hursh was ranked 50 on Baseball America’s latest list. He was drafted by the Pirates in 2010 but decided to go to college instead. He’s not the finished product that like Mark Appel and Jonathon Gray are but he does has some of the best raw stuff in the draft.  he threw only 30 innings in 2011 and missed last season due to Tommy John Surgery. Surgery at such an early age raises question but he’s worked hard on conditioning and improving his delivery since he went under the knife He’s bounced back for the surgery he’s throwing as hard as ever reaching 103MPH last summer. Admittedly National Baseball Congress World Series gun is always .. well faster than the average gun but  this college season saw him sitting mid-nineties and touching 98 on occasion. he has what pro call easy gas and late heavy life on a tailing fastball. Baseball American called it “…one of the most devastating pitches in the draft.” His secondary pitches are a work in progress but his slider is considered average and his changeup is “decent.”  You can listen to MLB.com’s evaluation by clicking here.

Here’s a two minute feature on his recovery. It’s a PR piece for the scouts but it’s not bad.


There are questions about his ability to stick as a major league starter But that power arm and heavy tailing sinker/slider  would come in real handy in the eighth or ninth innings if he can’t

That’s a Wrap

It was obvious from the picture of Frank Wren and crew in the draft room that they were happy with their choice. These draft picks are really down too the scouting guys with the GM acting as tie breaker if needed. One can argue that Ian Clarkin or Hunter Green might have more upside but once you get past the top 10 pitchers or so it’s really a matter if how your scouts feel about a player and how he fits your needs. Everyone needs pitcher who throws 95mph with heavy so I’ll be interested in how they try to shore up the holes in our every day player pool. That’s my take, what’s yours?

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Tags: Atlanta Braves Mlb Draft

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Saw a report that Braves’ scouts had Hursh clocked at 99 mph during the Big 12 tournament.

    SECOND ROUND: Pick #65. Victor Caratini. Catcher (6’1″, 205lbs), Miami-Dade Community College. Switch hitter.
    THIRD ROUND: Pick #102. Carlos Salazar. RHP (6’0″, 200lbs). Kerman High School (CA).
    FOURTH ROUND: Pick #133. Tanner Murphy. Catcher (6’1″, 215lbs), Malden High School (MO).
    FIFTH ROUND: Pick #163. Mikey Reynolds. Shortstop (5’9″, 165lbs). Texas A&M.
    SIXTH: Steve Janas. Pick 193. RHP, Kennesaw State (GA)
    SEVENTH: Ian Stiffler. Pick 223. RHP, Summerset HS (PA).

    We had speculated about these three guys perhaps going to Atlanta in Round 1:

    Marco Gonzales. As expected, he went early: #19 to the Cardinals.
    Jonathan Crawford. Another quick one: #20 to Detroit.
    Hunter Green. He fell all the way to Pick #59 (Angels).

    If you want an organizational ‘theme’ so far, it would seem to be getting the guys who play ‘rare’ positions well (2 pitchers, 2 catchers, a SS so far). In terms of pitching specifically, I agree with @gondeee, who tweeted that ‘you can’t teach velocity’ and that the Braves were likely going after big arm that they could ‘teach how to pitch’, which this organization does a great job of.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    1st 7 picks Picks vs. Baseball America Rankings:

    Hursh. Picked 31st. Rank 46.
    Caratini: Picked 65th. Rank 124.
    Salazar: Picked 102. Rank 93. Ding.
    Tanner Murphy. Picked 133. Rank 488. Oh my. Frank, Why???
    Mikey Reynolds. Picked 163. Rank 325. What’s going on here?
    Steve Janas. Picked 193. Rank 355. Another large over-pick
    Ian Stiffler. Pick 223. Unranked. *smh*

    I gotta say: even if you REALLY like these last guys, you could have drafted allof them 5 – 6 – 7… rounds later! I still don’t quite get the game that is played with signability and getting players above/below slot, but by any measure, these last several picks are real reaches.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Round 8: Frank Wren drafts son Kyle (Ga Tech OF)… ranked 215th. Only the second pick made by the Braves ranked ABOVE the pick position.

    • fireboss

      I just finished work so I’ll answer here. Hursh knows how to pitch as well as most but he’s behind a bit because the surgery took a year from him. The worry as I read it was whether he’d last physically.. keep his velocity up for 7-8 innings. That’s why the stat guys and some scouts think he’s a bullpen guy. . .well that and they think every big arm who isn’t polished like Strasburg is a bullpen guy.
      I’m going to do a follow up on what I think are misses in this draft; Ian Clarkin for example. Lots of these HS guys won’t sign or won;t make it out of rookie ball. I’ll rerun the stats on how we do getting draft guys to the bigs. Between 2004 and 2007 the only guy that made it for us is Medlen and he was a 16th round guy as I recall.
      Drafting his son is mandatory I think, we drafted JS’ son too. I’ve thought for a while the draft philosophy was in need of an update. You can’t draft and trade pitching to get what you want when you don’t have pitching good enough to trade because you draft too low to get them.