Reed Garrett Prospect Profile
Name: Reed Garrett
Position: Right-Handed Pitcher
Birthdate: January 2, 1993
Ht/Wt: 6’2”, 210 lbs.
Hometown: Henrico, Va.
School: Virginia Military Institute
Profile Date(s) — July 2018
Affiliate (League): Frisco RoughRiders (Texas League)
Level (Org): Double-A (Texas Rangers)
Five years in pro ball now for Reed Garrett, and by my count, as least three major re-inventions. A starting pitcher when the Texas Rangers drafted him out of VMI, Garrett was a swing-man middle reliever by the time I first saw him at High-A High Desert in 2016, trying to carve out a niche as a multi-inning relief arm with a deep repertoire. He was back to starting by the Arizona Fall League that year, working hard on a sinker the organization had asked him to develop in order to eat innings with ground ball contact. Never a particularly hard thrower to that point, it seemed like Reed Garrett might perfectly fit that mold for a few years as org depth — until the winds of change pushed him to the back end of the bullpen in 2017 and the Rangers asked him to close for Double-A Frisco.
He did it, though not exceptionally well (2-5, 4.98 ERA with ten saves in 15 chances across 44 appearances), but it’s been his second try at closing, this summer also with the RoughRiders, that appears to have done the trick. Formerly a high-80s pitch-to-contact guy, Reed Garrett now boasts a 93-97 mph fastball with serious run back to his arm-side. He’ll pair it with an 84-89 slider with great tilt and a pro look to it already, and a lesser-used 83-85 mph changeup. He’s a serious matchup problem for right-handed bats late in games, and appears to have the natural intangibles and presence to throw late in high-leverage situations.
Garrett, now nearly 26 and still in Double-A, is far off the big league radar, but he’s nevertheless an intriguing bullpen candidate if only by virtue of his experience across the board and now his late-blossoming, truly powerful arsenal. He’s been truly exceptional to date this year in Frisco (.191 opponents’ average, 1.57 ERA over his first 28 relief appearances there), and though it’s not likely, there may just be a big league future — even just a cup of coffee — ahead for Garrett. Regardless, it’s been remarkable to see him come full circle in so many ways. If you’d told me in 2016 he’d be closing and nearly flirting with triple digit fastballs, I’d have said you were crazy; I tagged him then as org depth, and though he may still end up as that, it’s remarkable that he’s made it this far. Now, he’s given himself a real shot to go even further.
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