POSITION: Right-handed pitcher
BORN ON: March 30, 1987
AGE: Will be 21 years old this season
BORN IN: Paducah, Kentucky
LIVES IN: Golconda, Florida
WEIGHT: 200 pounds
SCHOOL: Pope County High School in Illinois
ACQUIRED: Selected in the fourth round of the 2005 amateur draft
SIGNED BY: Terry Tripp
STATISTICSClick here for 2007 stats
SCOUTING REPORTMike Broadway had a very unusual season in 2007. With the crowded Rome rotation he really wasn't able to be a full-time starter until the second half of the season. He got one start in the first three months of the year. While he won 11 games, his other numbers were not very impressive.
Broadway allowed way too many hits (125) in only 96 innings of work. He struck out only 50 batters, and for Broadway's stuff that's way too low. Broadway did a bit better as a starter (5.03 ERA) than as a reliever (5.53), but he still gave up too many hits.
There were some flashes of impressive work, however. He allowed only one earned run over six innings in Greensboro on August 14th, and then two weeks later against Savannah Broadway gave up one run on four hits in seven innings. But there was still too much inconsistency.
When you look at Broadway's body (6'5") and his stuff, you wonder why he's not been more successful. But we all do have to remember that Broadway was very raw when the Braves drafted him almost three years ago. Broadway can hit his fastball consistently between 94-97 mph, but he's just throwing. The Braves want Mike to really learn how to be a pitcher. Almost every scout and coach says the same thing, that when Broadway learns more about being a pitcher instead of a thrower, he could take off.
And with a fastball that can hit 97 mph, Broadway's got a huge advantage. But the Braves want to see him loosen up a bit on the mound. He falls into one of the bad habits that tall pitchers can have in that he can get a little stiff on the mound. Mike can really dominate at times, but the Braves want to see him throw more quality strikes. Throwing strikes is one thing (especially if they hit it), but for Broadway he's got to learn more about throwing quality strikes.
2008 OUTLOOKBroadway has a great chance to move up to Myrtle Beach this season. He'll have to compete in March for a job in the rotation, as the Braves won't give him anything. He's going to have to earn it, especially after being inconsistent so far in his career. But the Braves are going to be careful with Broadway, who has attracted attention at times from other teams in trade discussions. They know that if a kid with a 95 mph arm gets it, he could take off. It will be interesting to see what role Broadway has this season. Might the Braves be tempted to switch Broadway to the bullpen if he struggles as a starter with consistency? It's possible, but he'll have to show them what he can do in March. Again, putting Broadway with Bruce Dal Canton in Myrtle Beach will only help him in his development. Broadway has a very good arm, with electric stuff, so the Braves really hope he'll take off this season.
ADDITIONAL STORY LINKSClick here for Broadway's 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 email@example.com.