Tigers Scouting Report: LHP Josh Turley

Left-hander Josh Turley has made plenty of noise this season for coming out of relative obscurity to shine in Lakeland as a member of the rotation, and continuing to find success after his promotion to Double-A Erie. Has Turley's impressive season resulted in an elevation in his prospect status?

Josh Turley


Position: Left-handed Pitcher
Date of Birth: 8/26/1990 (2014 Opening Day Age: 23)
Height/Weight: 6-0/185
Bats/Throws: Left/Left
Acquired: 2013 MLB Draft, 16th Round
Ranking History: No previous ranking

Background: Turley posted sparkling stat lines in his first two professional seasons, notching a 1.06 ERA and 2.09 ERA between Connecticut and West Michigan, respectively. In his first taste at High-A in 2014, Turley split time between the rotation and bullpen, posting a 1.85 ERA with a 3.52 strikeout to walk ratio. He was promoted to Double-A Erie last month and his ERA has jumped to 3.54 with only a 2.00 strikeout to walk ratio.


2013 Stats - Pitching
Lakeland 1813097.17022120238111.850.967-1
Erie 55028.0293121181603.541.233-2

Scouting Report

Body: Small, below-average frame; smaller than listed height; would be surprised if listed weight was accurate; no significant muscle definition; narrow shoulders; thin legs; lacks physical projection.

Delivery/Mechanics: Simple movements; everything is consistent; stays compact; works quickly between pitches; works quickly from first movement to release; below-average arm speed; delivery changes when he goes to knuckleball; change can be noticeable for advanced hitters; has some deception w/ standard delivery; minimal effort to overall delivery.

Fastball: Works 85-87 consistently; reaches 89 mph on occasion; FB gets flat and works up at upper velo register; lacks life out of the hand; some deception w/ fastball that allows it to play up a half tick; lack of height leads to lack of plane on FB; doesn’t work down consistently enough; FB can be squared by better hitters; throws strikes w/ pitch; below-average overall w/ no projection. Grade – Present 4/Future 4

Changeup: Low-80s offering w/ arm speed and slot deception; good movement; best traditional pitch in his arsenal; fringe-average pitch with potential to reach average with additional consistency and demonstration of worth against advanced hitters; pitch works down consistently; can lead to weak contact; good low level offering but not a true MLB pitch. Grade – 4+/4+

Slider: Works low-80s; slurvy shape; gets a little sweepy at times; below-average offering w/ only show-me potential at higher levels. Grade – 4/4

Curveball: Works Mid-70s; 2-7 break; spin is not consistently tight; doesn’t have sharp, darting break; spins it to zone and will cast it at times; another below-average offering; no projection. Grade – 4/4

Knuckleball: Highest rated offering; average pitch; delivery changes to make it work; dances and darts in the mid- to upper-70s; solid trick pitch; not a reliable pitch against upper-level hitters; doesn’t throw it enough or consistently enough to carry his profile. Grade – 5/5

Control/Command: Pitches to the strike zone; consistently around the zone; doesn’t locate any pitch within the strike zone consistently; needs to learn to move to the edges and work the knees more consistently; has to develop ability to work away from the zone with pitches to coax weak contact; plus control; fringe command.

Other: Gamer; likes to take the ball and get after hitters; confident in his stuff even if it lacks sex appeal; works hard on the field; can field his position; intelligent.

Final Word

Summary: Lots of below-average stuff; quantity doesn’t compensate for lack of quality; knuckleball is best offering; will mix and match to the end of time; pounds the zone, almost to a fault; has some polishing to do for profile to work at MLB level; fringy profile.

Risk: Low risk; is what he is; no projection remaining in stuff raw stuff; command could develop some but unlikely at this stage; low ceiling talent.

Projection: Lacks MLB profile; arsenal won’t work at highest level; max profile of up-and-down mop-up man; more likely long-term org guy that fills multiple roles at multiple levels.

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