Ventura, California —— At the top of this post, watch one of our scouting videos of Ventura College right-handed pitching prospect Austin Rubick, taken from a start of his in April, 2017 against visiting Pasadena City College as a sophomore member of the Pirates’ starting pitching rotation.
To read our feature interview with Ventura College’s Austin Rubick that was also published today, please click here. To visit Austin Rubick’s player page, please click here. And please subscribe to the Baseball Census YouTube channel here for hundreds more videos like this one.
Austin Rubick scouting report notes
A big strong right-handed pitcher who spent his freshman year at the University of Arizona before transferring back to his hometown and Ventura College, Austin Rubick has turned himself into a legitimate MLB Draft candidate thanks to exceptional velocity and feel for his fastball and a big, projectable frame upon which to build. More than anything, Rubick got what he needed in 2016: innings. Committed to the University of Hawai’i in the fall if he’s not selected in the MLB Draft, he’ll only get more of those after throwing 57 frames over 12 starts this spring, and finishing with a 2-4 record, a 6.32 ERA, and 59 strikeouts—but also 45 walks.
Rubick is somewhat raw right now in his mechanics and release points, which is to be expected for such a young pitcher, and he showed it this spring at Ventura College: one very good start, one not-so-good; one day throwing in the low- to mid-90s with his fastball, one day throwing in the mid- to upper-80s; one batter of pinpoint command and advanced feel, one batter lost to a free pass to first base.
All those things will get ironed out as he ages into his game, though, and when Austin Rubick is at his best, he’s a professional-quality starting pitcher with good feel for his stuff and a very hard fastball. The righty will sit anywhere from 86-94 mph, and he can top out a mile or two higher on his best days with the four-seam fastball. He matches it well with a two-seam offering that sits in the mid-80s and shows a bit of arm-side run and some good sink, a pitch he can use with great success against righties especially. His variable fastball velocity is a product of his inconsistent mechanics and release point right now; refinement in his drive toward home plate ought to push him consistently into the low 90s, making him a very attractive starting pitcher.
His breaking ball is variable right now, much like his overall results; he’ll throw one or two very, very good ones, and then lose his release point and focus for a pitch and hang one, or hit a right-handed batter with it as it sails on him. When Rubick gets on top of the breaking ball, it has an 11-to-5 break and sits in the upper 70s and low 80s. Long term, it’d be interesting to see if he doesn’t start throwing that pitch harder to take advantage of some of his natural arm strength and avoid the looping, hanging offerings in favor of a far sharper true slider. Rubick also flashes a changeup that is promising at times, with a good hump and some depth. He has average feel for the pitch right now, but he already understands when and how to use it; further refinement and repetition will undoubtedly allow him to figure out consistency with it as he ages and it could turn into an above-average pitch for him.
Rubick will make an interesting MLB Draft option next month. He was initially drafted by the Cleveland Indians out of high school, but opted to go to Arizona instead, and now he might hear his name called on MLB Draft day once again very soon. Whether that happens or he shows up on the Hawaii campus in August, though, he really needs more innings to continue to flesh out his great stuff. He’s a big, tall guy and he’s still learning to find consistency in his mechanics and release points. Wherever he pitches next, he’d be best served to let run out there and rack up innings as he learns the nuances of the game along the way.
Long term, the Ventura College product ought to be a starting pitcher for much of his professional career, with enough stuff to survive a lineup multiple times and the raw competitiveness and mindset to flourish in an every-fifth-day role. Barring something unforeseen, Austin Rubick will soon be playing professional baseball, be it before or after his stint at Hawaii; his raw arm strength is too good, his body type is too projectable, and his stuff is already too advanced not to have a big league organization take a chance. In the meantime, the more innings he can get to refine his approach and maintain his higher working velocities, the better.
For our feature interview with Ventura College right-handed pitcher Austin Rubick, please click here.
To visit Austin Rubick’s player page, please click here.
Austin Rubick scouting report: 140 characters or less
A big righty with a strong arm, Austin Rubick has good raw stuff. If given the right innings and proper development, the sky is the limit.
Austin Rubick scouting report video
Here’s a look at our most recent Austin Rubick baseball video, taken during a couple of his recent starts in March and April, 2017 against Pasadena City College and Cuesta College:
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Austin Rubick scouting report GIFs
In addition to our video clips, we broke out some Austin Rubick baseball GIFs for a deeper look at pitch action, mechanics, arm action, etc.:
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In this Ventura College / MLB Draft / Austin Rubick baseball scouting report: