Clayton Blackburn | RHP, 21 yo, 6-3, 220 | 2011 Draft – 16 | (A+) 23 GS, 133 IP, 3.65 ERA, 7.5 H/9, 2.4 BB/9, 9.3 K/9
Blackburn has been quite impressive for the Giants since the day they drafted him. In his first 2+ professional seasons, the big righty has been durable and dominant, striking out over a batter an inning. He doesn’t have the stuff or the upside of fellow babies Kyle Crick or Adalberto Mejia – Blackburn works more in the high-80’s, low-90’s range with his fastball – but he may turn out to be the most dependable MLB pitcher of the bunch. He’s incredibly polished for a 21 year-old, throwing four pitches in any count, usually for strikes. Without the elite velocity, he’ll have to keep the ball down as he advances to the upper minors. His fastball probably won’t fool better hitters, but his curve is a thing of beauty when it’s below the knees. He’s held his own at every step so far, and I expect him to continue that trend into the future.
They said it: “Can throw four pitches for strikes. Organization wants him to work on his body, which is stocky, even if he is athletic for his size. He kind of reminds me of Rick Reuschel, body type and stuff-wise.” ~ Giants minor league pitching coordinator Bert Bradley
(Conner Penfold/Giant Potential)