After taking LHP Garrett Crochet 11th overall, the White Sox selected RHP Jared Kelley out of Refugio High School (TX) 47th Overall. Kelley is the 12th ranked prospect on MLB.com’s 2020 draft rankings. He was also presented the 2020 National Gatorade Player of the Year from Philadelphia Phillies OF Bryce Harper. Kelley had a career W-L record of 32-3 with a 0.43 ERA and in 2020 before the COVID-19 pandemic stoppage, he threw 12 spotless innings with 34 K’s.
The righty can clock in 93-96 MPH on his fastball and can reach 98 with some break movement along with his plus changeup with fade and sink. His 3rd pitch in his repertoire is a hard slurve in the low 80s which lacks consistency but over time it should develop into a solid piece of his arsenal.
Considering these impressive accolades, its quite surprising Kelley fell to the 2nd round. White Sox scouting director mentioned he had to get creative with the pool to consider taking him on Day 2.
The creativeness showed in the team’s next three selections. As they selected JUCO RHP Adisyn Coffey who was not even ranked in Baseball America’s Top 500, and two recent victims of Tommy John surgery, Kade Mechals and Bailey Horn. These three hurlers come with some risk, so they would leave more money in the Sox pool to convince Kelley to forgo his commitment to the University of Texas. It seems like the Sox have nothing to worry about though, due to this statement from the 18-year-old saying that he’s ready to get to work:
With the uncertainty of a 2020 minor league season, it’ll be interesting to see how all these draftees will get a chance to develop and hone their skills. Kelley has plenty of time and youth backing him up to show the 29 teams why they’ll regret passing on him. The White Sox are on the verge of their contention window and Kelley looks to be a promising part of their future.
Featured Photo: Corpus Christi Caller-Times