A 40th round MLB Draft pick back in 2013 by the St. Louis Cardinals out of Gonzaga University, right-handed pitching prospect Arturo Reyes spent the bulk of the 2017 season with Triple-A Memphis, broken up by a midseason injury that landed him on the disabled list for two months. Reyes opened the year in the rotation with the Redbirds and pitched well, going 5-2 with a 3.21 ERA in nine games (six starts) before landing on the DL in late May. By the time he returned from a rehab assignment in late July, he was banished to the bullpen in shorter stints, where his work was decidedly less consistent. Then, after throwing just 69.1 innings over the summer, the Cardinals sent Arturo Reyes to the Arizona Fall League in October, where he appeared in ten games (all in relief) and posted no record with a save and a 6.23 ERA for the Surprise Saguaros (13 innings, 18 hits, two walks, 12 strikeouts).

The St. Louis Cardinals have far more notable pitching prospects throughout their system who may yet turn into front-end starters and/or high-leverage relievers, but there’s a lot to like about the 25-year-old (DOB: April 6, 1992), as well. The righty boasts a deep arsenal, good feel for command across the board, and some competitiveness and pitchability belied by his 40th round background. After seeing him pitch four times at the AFL, Baseball Census has a full Arturo Reyes scouting report below, including tool grades, game video, and projection notes.




Arturo Reyes Scouting Report, St. Louis Cardinals — 2017

Dates observed in 2017: Arizona Fall League

TOOL (FV)
NOTES & COMMENTS
Four-Seam Fastball (50)
Straight pitch with occasional natural cut, especially when he gets extended to glove side. Not overly tall on the mound (just 5’11, 185 lbs.) but surprisingly good downward plane with sinking life from release point; command feel for the pitch side to side and down in the zone plays it up, especially in higher velocity band. Free and easy release with the ball jumping to the plate. Won’t overpower, but well commanded and consistent across multiple looks and can do its job well enough to establish early with enough velo to keep hitters honest. Velocity: 90-93, T 94.

Two-Seam Fastball (50)
Good sink; feel for manipulation of the pitch, particularly to arm-side in against RHH. Occasional feel for back-door strikes against RHH, but not quite enough natural arm-side run to get it off the plate and see it run back consistently. Life on the pitch is very late and short, more concentrated in natural sink than arm-side run; potential to become a power sinker with some development and further manipulation. Already a ground ball machine with some ability to draw weak contact. Velocity: 88-91,T 92.

Curveball (40)
12-to-6 break with some hump; perhaps could be average at its best, but far too inconsistent in execution right now. Tendency to hang up in the zone or break too early and slow, neither of which proves effective. Identical arm action to fastball and rest of arsenal; not afraid to throw curve after slider and vice versa (two distinct pitches). Some side to side feel at times, but command could stand to improve along with consistency in execution; Reyes’ overall value as a pitcher could significantly improve with rapid gains on curveball, especially as a weapon to LHH. Velocity: 76-78, T 79.

Slider (45)
11-to-5 break with good depth; very tight. Break is late and short, but enough depth to miss bats, especially when down in the zone and when released out front. His best off-speed pitch right now, likely to remain best going forward. Identical arm speed with comparable tunneling to fastball; can be tough for hitters to pick up. Could conceivably tinker with feel and experiment with a slider that shows even more depth, but late, short life is a good look at current velocity, with potential to one day grade out higher than my 45. Clearly likes to throw it and will fall in love with using it from time to time. Velocity: 83-86, T 87.

Changeup (40)
Straight change with a little bit of arm-side run and fade down and in to RHH; insignificant to miss bats and not much more than a show-me pitch with modest effectiveness against LHH based on my few AFL looks. Sells the pitch well with arm speed and extension out front, but not enough deception or late life to miss bats and will draw lots of contact (albeit weak, ground ball contact when commanded well). Pitch would prove more valuable in rotation work than bullpen; good second- and third-time-through look to add, especially against LHH. Velocity: 79-81, T 82.

Control/Command (60/50)
Consistent feel for both sides of the strike zone and general ability to execute on his locations, particularly with the fastball and slider. Easy extension out to glove side; short arm action in back swing on drive to the plate helps keep his release point consistent and on time, in turn benefitting overall control/command profile. Throws enough strikes to feasibly start games, though command improvements necessary, particularly with curveball. Competitive with gamer mentality and pitches bigger than he is; manifests itself as strike thrower who wants to challenge hitters.

Mechanics
Pretty conventional high three-quarters look with short arm action on the back side; good arm speed through to release and extension out front. Smooth, but some max effort tendencies in his delivery, likely pointing towards a bullpen future (not to mention stature/physicality concerns at 5’11”, 185 lbs.). Athletic, with natural ability to coordinate delivery and keep timing; simple without moving parts and profiles well to repeat on rotation schedule if body proves durable enough.

Intangibles
More impressive than his numbers let on at AFL; kept big arsenal even after move to the bullpen, and he throws it all for strikes with some feel. Likes to challenge hitters and pitches bigger than his less-than-ideal stature. Quick and simple arm action provides some deceptive velocity with enough in his arsenal to keep hitters honest on the fastball. Competitive; some bulldog in him on the mound. Ceiling limited by size, stuff, organizational context, but I like him to out-pitch his projections; arguably, as a 40th round draft pick, he already has.




Arturo Reyes Scouting Report — St. Louis Cardinals — 2017 Game Video





Arturo Reyes Scouting Report — Notes, Analysis & Projection

The writing may have been on the wall for Arturo Reyes as soon as the St. Louis Cardinals moved him to the bullpen during 2017’s second half after returning from injury, not to mention working a full AFL slate in relief for Surprise, but I think there’s enough command feel and clearly a deep enough repertoire here with the competitiveness and guile to earn some rotation work moving forward. Reyes isn’t particularly impressive in any one one area of his game, but he’s solid across the board with a knack for challenging hitters and he plainly isn’t afraid to throw any pitch for a strike in any count. Refined and polished with pitchability to that end, he may surprise some people in the next few years if he proves able to execute his breaking balls with consistency.

A poorly-timed injury in 2017 may have robbed Arturo Reyes of a big league debut last year, but I think he gets up to St. Louis in 2018, likely as a swingman or long reliever with some bona fide potential to fill out the back-end of the rotation—even temporarily—if things really roll his way. For a former 40th round draft pick, that’d be a considerable development win for the St. Louis Cardinals and a successful big league future beating the odds for Reyes.

Overall Future Potential (Future Value): Back-end rotation potential at ceiling with deep, effective arsenal and command feel across the board; more likely to grow into swingman/middle relief role in next few years (45)

MLB ETA: 2018




Did you like this Arturo Reyes scouting report? Get more prospects here:

St. Louis Cardinals RHP Winston Nicacio — CLICK HERE

St. Louis Cardinals SS Delvin Perez — CLICK HERE

St. Louis Cardinals RHP Sandy Alcantara — CLICK HERE

Washington Nationals OF Victor Robles — CLICK HERE

Minnesota Twins RHP Ryan Eades — CLICK HERE

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