Missing a lot... -- KingMackPirate 05/19/2017 08:05AM
Missing a lot...
Low 90's on the FB and one of the best curve balls in the country..
From D1 Baseball:
Friday’s outing against Memphis might not have been Cate’s easiest effort of the year, but that didn’t stop him from showcasing a first round draft pick profile. Over 111 pitches, Cate didn’t throw a fastball under 90 mph and held a hopping 91-93 mph heater over the entirety of the outing. He was very aggressive in the zone and was not afraid to challenge up and on the inside part of the plate against righty batters. His ability, or commitment to working inside with fastballs, may be one of the biggest differentiating factors in his game. It’s also no coincidence, as working inside has become an institution for UConn’s hard throwing pitchers in recent years.
“With guys that throw hard, and it’s something we stress here, if you throw hard, you gotta get inside,” said MacDonald. “Ninety percent of all good hitting teams in college just shoot the ball hard the other way. If you can get the ball above 90 mph consistently, then we’ve gotta get in on their hands. I think what was really big for Tim was watching [Anthony] Kay, who doesn’t have Tim’s wipeout breaking ball. So watching Anthony just blitz guys inside with that 92-93 fastball, that’s something he was able to learn that you can get outs that way.”
Another major factor in Cate’s success and something that instantly stands out to scouts is his ability to repeat his very mechanically sound delivery. Cate has a smooth arm path and generates outstanding plane, which should ease some of the concern that he stands just six feet tall. His long limbs, coordination, and ability to finish his pitches extremely well negate much of the downside to his height. That ability to consistently extend at his release and repeat time and time again can also be attributed to his very unique athleticism.
“Tim is a freak athlete,” said MacDonald. “This fall, just to prove one of his teammates wrong, he asked ‘when we do our pull downs at the end, do you mind if I throw a couple righthanded.’ His teammate throws 92 doing it and [Cate] picked up one ball and it was 93 [mph]. In high school, he had Tommy John surgery his junior year. I just happened to go out to see him, and I see he’s playing center field righthanded. If he really needed to, he could play college outfield with his eyes closed. He’s just a really gifted athlete.”
There is something else, however, that makes Tim Cate an entirely different beast from other pitching prospects. He has a separator, and it’s something he’s had for quite some time. Since arriving at UConn, he’s only continued to sharpen it into one of the single best weapons any pitcher has in college baseball. That weapon is his straight down, hammer curveball. That curveball was on fully display against Memphis on Friday, and his consistency with it game after game is one of the most impressive things about it. We’ve seen a number of curveball reliant pitchers over the years that may not be able to find the feel for it from outing to outing.
Thrown at 80-83 mph in his Friday outing, Cate’s curveball is a strikeout pitch against both left and righty hitters. He can drop it in for a strike or bury it down in the zone at all. Hitters look for it, are geared for it, and it still generates swings and misses. It’s that devastating. It grades better than plus and as at least a 65 on the 20-80 scouting scale. Cate also mixed in some big league average changeups later in the outing at 84-86 mph. It will be a pitch he’ll want to mix in more, but for now, his command of his 90-93 mph fastball and wipeout curveball make for a fearsome combination.
“No. Never,” MacDonald said when asked if he’d seen a better lefthanded curveball at the college level. “He came to us after his freshman year of high school to our August camp. And he was 75-77 [with his fastball]. Then he comes out and throws that breaking ball. And I immediately circled his name. All we did was follow. We just followed and followed. He came back out right before his junior season. And I said if we can hit 85, I can sell coach that we should recruit him. Sure enough, he hit 85, then we went forward. Really though, that breaker has been there for him since he was about 14-years-old.”
Tim Cate had the weapons and the physical tools of a potential first round draft picking coming into the season. He’s also been gifted for some time with pure athleticism that can set him apart from most pitchers. What we’re seeing from him this spring, though, is the fine tuning of his approach, mentality, and command that are allowing him to join some very elite company as one of the most complete aces in the country.
(In response to this post by ecupiratz)
Posted: 05/19/2017 at 08:05AM
Cate - what am I missing -- ecupiratz 05/18/2017 8:34PM
Location, location, location. -- xflat 05/18/2017 8:43PM
Maddux, Smoltz and Glavine also were given an extremely large -- ecupiratz 05/18/2017 9:12PM
That and locating 3/4 pitches keeps people off balance ** -- piratelaw 05/18/2017 9:11PM
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