Scouting Mets' Prospect #34: Scott Hyde

The New York Mets drafted Scott Hyde out of George Fox University in the 7th round of the 2004 draft. Hyde made his debut with the Cyclones this past season after finishing third in Division III history in career strikeouts. Ranking #34 among the Mets' Top 50 prospects, here's a scouting report on Hyde.

Vital Statistics:
Name: Scott Hyde
Position: Starting Pitcher
DOB: March 24, 1983
Height: 6'3"
Weight: 180
Bats: Right
Throws: Right

Hyde grew up in the small town of Grants Pass, Oregon, and went to college at George Fox University in the even smaller town of Newberg, Oregon. George Fox University is a small Christ-centered university in Oregon noted more for its academic excellence than their athletic prowess. Hyde, who grew up playing shortstop and third base and did not begin pitching until he senior year of high school, was the consummate teammate and began pitching for George Fox when the team needed another arm. But what Scott Hyde did for their baseball program was put George Fox University on the proverbial baseball map, leading them to the Division III World Series Championship in 2004 on the strength of a 14-1 campaign. In 2004, Hyde went 14-1 with a 1.99 ERA, posting the second highest strikeout total in one season in Division III history when he struck out 191 batters with just 36 walks in 122 innings. Hyde was named Division III Co- Pitcher of the Year, sharing the honor with Ryan DiPietro of Eastern Connecticut, whom he defeated in the NCAA Championship Game when he retired 14 of the last 15 batters, striking out 13 batters and walking just one in a 140-pitch complete game victory to win the Division III title.

Hyde earned the reputation as one of the grittiest pitchers in college baseball and it was never more evident than the 20 innings he threw in a five day stretch from May 28th through June 1st of 2004. After throwing a complete game victory in George Fox's first playoff game on May 28th, Hyde threw 2 innings of relief on May 31st, and the next day he lead his team to a 9-inning, 140 pitch complete game victory for the DIII championship. "To be honest with you I just think God came down, and helped my arm" said Hyde. "He protected me those couple of days, and that was a real blessing. Many people worked hard to get my arm the way it was. Byron Shenk, our trainer, must have given me 15 massages, I had ice on it, and was constantly in the trainer's room. When I wasn't throwing, somebody was doing something to my right arm. For them to just work so hard to put me in a position to come back, and throw that soon, it was just amazing", Hyde told NYfansonly.com earlier in the season.

After going 32-5 in his college career and ranking third all-time in strikeouts in Division III history with 395 career strikeouts, the Mets took a chance on the tall right-hander from the small school in the seventh round of the draft. Hyde was assigned to Brooklyn to make his professional debut with the Cyclones but he was not slated to begin competitive pitching until 2005. A shoulder injury to Will Quaglieri opened the door for Hyde and he made his professional debut with the Cyclones in mid-July. Hyde went 4-4 with a 3.86 ERA for Brooklyn this past season and he showed glimpses of what he can bring to the table in his short season with the Cyclones.

So what does Hyde's former college coach think of him? "Scott Hyde is the best pitcher I have ever coached. He will compete his rear end off. He is very confident, yet he is also very humble. He has great listening skills and he has a huge desire to be successful. He is a committed Christian and he will be an outstanding role model for others", said George Fox University Head Coach Pat Bailey.

Year

Team

W-L

IP

Hits

BB

K

ERA

2004

Brooklyn

4-4

51.1

43

18

46

3.86


* Stats as of 10/1/04

Repertoire. Fastball, Curveball, Slider, Changeup.

Fastball. Hyde has an average MLB fastball, clocked regularly between 88-92 MPH and may get it a tick or two higher at times on the gun. He has a very good sinking action to his fastball and he has excellent command of it.

Other Pitches. Hyde's 12-6 curveball is considered his best pitch. It has a late-breaking action, it is both very sharp and very hard, and he throws it in the 78-82 MPH range. While in college, Hyde's curveball earned a 65-70 rating (on a scale of 80) from MLB Scouts, which means his curveball is already Major League caliber. While coaches and scouts alike are in love with Hyde's curveball, Hyde himself believes his slider is his best pitch. Considering just how good his curveball is that is truly saying something. Hyde also has a developing changeup.

Pitching. Hyde is a tall and athletic pitcher who throws downhill with the best of them. He uses his height to his advantage to get the most out of his legs and arm motion, a trait not very common for young pitchers. He has two plus pitches with his curveball and slider and a solid MLB fastball to compliment his breaking stuff. Hyde sometimes loses focus in the early stages of the game, a bad habit he picked up in college when he felt he only had to bear down when facing three or four of the better hitters in the opposing lineup. Once he realizes that everybody is a potential threat in a professional lineup he'll get over that in a hurry. He has excellent arm strength and loves to challenge the hitters.

Projection. Hyde is going to have to prove he can get out the professional hitters. As great as his success was in college, it was still just the Division III level. But with a solid repertoire, a great thirst for knowledge, and a true commitment to his team and teammates, Hyde has the chance to be a special pitching prospect for the Mets. Right now he projects to a middle of the rotation type of pitcher, possibly a #3 pitcher down the road with a chance to be even better. His college coach compared him to Aaron Sele and that comparison may be on the conservative side of Hyde's potential.

ETA. 2008. Hyde is the youngest of the very good Brooklyn pitchers that were in the rotation this past year and he's the one with the highest upside. Hyde has got to work on his focus and his changeup. Once he has mastered both of them the sky is the limit for him. Hyde should be in the Hagerstown rotation in 2005 and would be on pace to reach the Majors by 2008.

Starting Pitchers

2004 Team

Aaron Heilman

AAA - Norfolk Tides

Bob Keppel

AAA - Norfolk Tides

Neal Musser AA - Binghamton Mets
Brian Bannister AA - Binghamton Mets
Yusmeiro Petit AA - Binghamton Mets
Miguel Pinanago A - St. Lucie Mets
Kevin Deaton A - St. Lucie Mets
Matthew Lindstrom A - Capital City Bombers
Vincent Cordova A - Capital City Bombers
Greg Ramirez A - Capital City Bombers
Evan MacLane A - Brooklyn Cyclones
Scott Hyde A - Brooklyn Cyclones
Michael Devaney A - Brooklyn Cyclones
Joseph Williams A - Brooklyn Cyclones
Mike Swindell A - Brooklyn Cyclones
Gaby Hernandez R - GCL Mets


Comments

The Mets have some good pitching prospects and the system's depth is only going to get better with the additions of Alay Soler, Matt Durkin, and Philip Humber. Considering they have not pitched a professional inning in the Mets system as of yet, we'll focus on the pitchers that have. Among the Mets' pitching prospects, Yusmeiro Petit and Gaby Hernandez seem to have the highest ceilings simply because of their age and talent. However, the Mets do have a number of other good pitching prospects that still have time on their side to make their mark. The following starting pitchers are currently in our Tier One group...the top starting pitching prospects in the Mets system.

1) Aaron Heilman - Heilman struggled out of the gate in 2004 but was perhaps the hottest pitcher in the entire Mets' system the second half of the year. All Heilman needs is a chance. Give the guy 30 starts and see what he can do. But that day may never come with the Mets as he appears to be in New York's doghouse. It's a shame too. He's a better pitcher than people think.

2) Bob Keppel - Like Heilman, Keppel struggled mightily to begin the 2004 campaign but finished the year strong. Keppel's always had the repertoire and pitching ability to become a Major League starter. The question has been his strikeout rate. Still only 22 years old and seems forgotten.

3) Neal Musser - With the trade of Scott Kazmir, Musser becomes the Mets' best left-handed starting pitching prospect. A top prospect a couple of years ago, Musser was beset with injuries and had a bounce back year in 2004. Musser is still only 24 years old and should not be forgotten.

4) Brian Bannister - His stats do not accurately portray how good a pitcher he is. Bannister has four plus pitches in his repertoire and has the chance to be a front-line starter someday. Remember, Bannister has only been pitching for 4 seasons...two in college, two in the pros. So as good as he is, he is still learning which is a scary thought.

5) Yusmeiro Petit - The Mets #1 pitching prospect the minute the Mets traded Kazmir. Forget about the pundits and all their talk about lack of "stuff". Petit knows how to pitch at such a young age (19). Drawing comparisons to Greg Maddux, Petit has the ability to change speeds on his fastball and is very deceptive on the mound. Bottom line is he's been baffling hitters from the word go.

6) Miguel Pinango - Pinango was cruising through the Mets system until an injury in St. Lucie ended his season in 2004 after just three starts. Pinango's command is superb. Only Petit's command is perhaps better and even that's not a lock. Still only 21 years old (he'll be 22 by the start of next season), Pinango is still a very good pitching prospect for the Mets.

7) Kevin Deaton - Growing up as an offensive lineman, Deaton is an imposing figure on the mound. Like Pinango, Deaton's rise through the system hit a speed bump in 2004 when he was plagued by injury (tendonitis). His fastball tops off at 94 MPH with solid movement and is still only 23 years old.

8) Matthew Lindstrom - Nobody throws as hard as Lindstrom does in the Mets' organization...nobody! Lindstrom is a fascinating talent that is getting a chance to showcase his stuff in the Arizona Fall League this year. With a fastball that regularly sits in the 94-96 MPH range, he can top it off at 100 MPH at times. Used primarily as a starter up to this point, his future seems to be in the bullpen...possibly as a closer.

9) Vincent Cordova - Cordova has the talent to be a very good pitching prospect for the Mets. Drafted out of college in 2003, Cordova needs to prove he can get hitters out at the higher level. Like Pinango and Petit, Cordova's success is predicated on his control. He's a Tier One prospect for now but time is not on his side.

10) Greg Ramirez - Used as both a starter and a relieve in his short career thus far, Ramirez is like Cordova. He has the talent and the stuff to be a Tier One pitching prospect for the Mets, but like Cordova, he's going to have to prove it at the higher levels to remain in this group. It's unclear how he will be used in the future.

11) Evan MacLane - MacLane gives the Mets' pitching in their farm system they seriously lack: quality left-handed pitching among their starting pitching prospects. MacLane was dominating South Atlantic League hitters in 2004 before being sent to Brooklyn where he had the same success. MacLane should be challenged in 2005 and will most likely be part of the St. Lucie staff. Like Ramirez, Cordova, Petit, and Pinango, MacLane is all about the control. He has great command of his pitches.

12) Scott Hyde - Hyde was not scheduled to pitch in live games this past season after being drafted but still managed to showcase some good pitching in his stint with the Cyclones. Hyde has the chance to be the "sleeper" among the Mets' 2004 draft picks.

13) Michael Devaney - Among the NY-Penn League leaders in ERA, Devaney is very solid. As is the case with most of the Cyclones' rotation, he'll have to duplicate the same success at the higher levels to remain in the Tier One level of starting pitching prospects.

14) Joseph Williams - Like Devaney, it's hard to dispute the success Williams had in Brooklyn this past season. The fact that he's a lefty aids his chances to be challenged quickly in the Mets' farm system.

15) Mike Swindell - Another college arm that was drafted in 2004 that will have to quickly prove he can become a solid starting pitching prospect for the Mets.

16) Gaby Hernandez - The Mets' third round pick in 2004, right now, Hernandez appears to be second behind Petit with the highest upside among the starting pitching prospects. It's too early to tell, but Hernandez has the talent to duplicate Petit's fast track through the minors.

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