Angels Prospect #10: Mason Tobin

After missing a chunk of the 2008 season with a shoulder problem, Mason Tobin has some ground to make up in 2009. If he's healthy though, there's a lot to like about Tobin's potential.

Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Height: 6'3"
Weight: 210 lbs
Born: July 8, 1987

When it came to the draft, the third time was the charm for Mason Tobin. The Braves selected Tobin as a draft-and-follow in both 2005 and 2006, but never signed with them. Finally, the Angels drafted Tobin in the 16th round of the 2007 Draft and he signed his first professional contract.

Tobin split time between the Arizona League and the Pioneer League in 2007, posting an impressive 2.08 ERA in 56 innings of work. Things seemed to be going well for Tobin last season when he was promoted to Cedar Rapids and had a 3.24 ERA after seven starts. In start number eight though, Tobin strained his right shoulder and was shut down for the rest of the season.

The injury might have been predicted when you look at Tobin's delivery. His mechanics are forced and he he doesn't look comfortable or effortless in his motion. The reports are that Tobin has recovered well from the injury and doesn't have any lasting effects, but you have to wonder if the Angels will work to ease some of the strain in his motion.

Before the injury, Tobin had a low-90s fastball and on occasion, would pump up his motion even more and push it to the mid-90s. Tobin has a lot of downward movement on his fastball and mixes it with his good, hard slider, which has a sharp break. The problem for Tobin is in coming up with a third pitch that he can use to get hitters out. His change-up hasn't developed well and hitters know that anything from him is going to be hard, so ultimately, if he's going to have success, he's going to need the change of speed that a good change-up would provide. Another option would be to move him to the bullpen and use him as a late-inning reliever, but the Angels haven't shown any sign of being interested in doing that.

2007 AZL 2 0 0.95 8 7 28.1 17 5 3 1 7 32 0.85 .177
2007 Orem 2 1 3.21 6 6 28.0 33 10 10 0 7 23 1.07 .230
2008 Cedar Rapids 2 3 3.13 8 8 27.1 29 13 13 2 18 18 1.26 .225
TOTALS 6 4 2.50 22 21 83.2 79 28 26 3 32 73 1.08 .212

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