Seattle Mariners Draft Edwin Diaz

Hisanori Takahashi

To be honest, there aren't a lot of good reasons to keep on writing about lower and lower draft picks, especially in a draft thought to be this light. The guy people care about the most is the first guy taken. That's the guy who's supposed to have the best odds, and even he usually doesn't have very good odds. After that, it's a non-literal crap shoot, and we're dedicating time to guys who might never rise above single-A. But here I am, writing something about the 98th overall pick. The 98th overall pick, by the Seattle Mariners, is Edwin Diaz.

Edwin Diaz is freshly 18, and just writing that makes me feel filthy. He's a right-handed pitcher, and he's coming out of Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico is the home of first-overall pick Carlos Correa! Puerto Rico must therefore be loaded with exceptional talent!

I've seen Diaz measured at 6'2, 160, and I've seen him measured at 6'3, 175. The numbers aren't important - everyone agrees that Diaz is reasonably tall and fairly thin. Diaz is 18 years old (freshly!). It would be weird if he'd already filled out.

What's so appealing about Diaz is that he throws his fastball in the low- to mid-90s, and has touched the upper-90s at times. He's another young, live arm, some of which develop and some of which don't. He recently participated in the Excellence Tournament which seems like a good thing to participate in. Now for the big shockers: Diaz has an inconsistent breaking ball, and an even more inconsistent changeup, and his mechanics are inconsistent too as he's still becoming polished.

See, there are reasons why Diaz went 98th instead of first or second or third. By selecting him, the Mariners are giving their player developers a project. A talented project, but a project, as Diaz could use a lot of work. Right now, it's easy to label him as a probable future reliever, but I'm guessing we shouldn't label him as a probable future anything, aside from a probable future Edwin Diaz. We know that Diaz will remain himself, presuming he hasn't doctored any birth certificates. As a pitcher, we don't know where he'll go.

Interestingly, here's a screenshot of Diaz's arm slot throwing a fastball:

Diaz1_medium

Here's a screenshot of Diaz's arm slot throwing a breaking ball:

Diaz2_medium

The second one is a good deal higher. Maybe it's intentional. Maybe it's a flaw. Maybe it's nothing because these are screenshots of two individual pitches, out of many. But now you have a better idea of what Edwin Diaz looks like.

So there's a Mariners draft pick. I think I'm probably done writing about them now, as I have other things to do. It's easy to imagine Diaz making it as a flame-throwing bullpen arm down the road. It's easy to imagine Diaz making it as an area realtor. Good luck, Seattle Mariners organization!

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