POSITION: Left-handed starting pitcher
BORN ON: October 13, 1987
AGE: 20 years old
BORN IN: Pordenone, Italy
LIVES IN: Tampa, Florida
SCHOOL: Robinson High School
ACQUIRED: Selected by the Braves in the Sandwich round (43rd overall) of the 2006 draft
SIGNED BY: Gregg Kilby
STATISTICSClick here for Evarts' 2007 stats
SCOUTING REPORTEvarts missed the first month of the season on the suspended list, so he didn't make his first appearance until July 19th. But Evarts really didn't have a tough outing once he got going. Evarts had only four walks in 37 innings, with 34 strikeouts.
In his first start (second game), Evarts threw four no-hit innings and did not walk a batter. And he finished up his season in the playoffs with an outstanding outing against Elizabethton as he gave up two unearned runs in five innings, with no walks and seven strikeouts.
While Jeff Locke relies on power, and Chad Rodgers relies on his command, Evarts relies mainly on his movement. The three lefties have differences, which make them very unique.
Evarts' fastball is in the 88-91 mph range and will occasionally touch 92 mph. His fastball just moves. It's not straight. If he's facing a right-handed batter, it cuts right in on the hands. When he throws middle in to a righty it just cuts. When he throw it away, it's a natural lefty fastball. But most of what Evarts throws is down in the zone.
Evarts continued to work on his curveball, and it got better last season. That improvement is the key to his development. Evarts never needed the curve too much in high school since he could spot the fastball and throw the change. The changeup remains an above average pitch.
2008 OUTLOOKEvarts will join fellow lefties Jeff Locke and Chad Rodgers in the Rome rotation. Since Evarts missed the first part of last season, the Braves are anxious to see him with a full-season team. After being arrested last winter in Tampa with some friends for taking a baseball bat to a vehicle, Evarts was a model citizen in Danville. The Braves think it'll be good for him to get out of Florida for a full-season team and be on his own. While Evarts will be tested, the Braves have confidence in his ability to become a serious prospect.
ADDITIONAL STORY LINKSSteve Evarts' 2007 Player Profile
Bill Shanks is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. Email Bill at firstname.lastname@example.org.