Position: Right-handed Pitcher
A Perth, Australia native, Wise joins the Tigers after having spent one year at Pratt Community College, and several years participating in high level Australian baseball leagues. In his one season stateside, Wise was named Jayhawk West First Team All-Conference, after a stellar season in the NJCAA.
The Tigers and particularly Area Scout Steve Taylor were extremely impressed with Wise, leading to his selection in the 8th round of the '05 draft. The organization did plenty of digging into his background and performances while in Australia, and felt they were getting a steal. Because of his age and relative inexperience, Wise joined the Gulf Coast League Tigers, where he steadily improved as the season progressed. After a very solid final month, Brendan finished the season with a 4.87 ERA in 10 starts (53 innings).
Following the logical progression, Wise was promoted to the New York-Penn League where he battled through some early season control issues to post a very solid season. Wise finished with only a 3-6 record, despite a 3.46 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in 60 innings for the Oneonta Tigers.
Despite his youth and inexperience, Wise boasts outstanding control and a determination to challenge hitters that will almost guarantee success as he moves up. His control deserted him during the early portion of the 2006 campaign, but he returned to prior form over the last two months of the season, walking less than 1.5 batters per nine innings. He spots his 90-92 mph fastball very well, and gets late, exploding life that keeps hitters off balance. Brendan can reach back for more if necessary, touching 94 with some regularity. His frame suggests he could add velocity as he continues to mature, which would seriously enhance his prospect status.
Brendan compliments his fastball with a solid average curveball, and a developing change. Wise's curveball has good late depth, and swift bite, but he lacks control and consistency with the pitch. He is beginning to learn to bury his curveball on the shoe-tops of left-handed hitters, making him more effective throughout the game. His change-up has shown flashes of being a third above-average pitch, but needs considerable work.
While at Pratt CC, Wise toyed with a slider, but never gained consistency with it and opted to scrap the pitch before the draft. He is a good athlete who repeats his delivery well, and fields his position at an average level. Wise has the makings of a complete pitcher who could be a solid #2 or #3 starter down the line.
Performance Level Team W-L ERA G GS SV SO BB IP AVG SS-A
Wise's athleticism and ability to repeat his mechanics well have led to an injury free career so far. His first taste of full-season ball in 2007 will be a true test as his workload is likely to jump significantly.
After Wise proved he could make necessary adjustments on the fly while at Oneonta, there is little doubt that he will head on to West Michigan for the 2007 season. Wise's command of his fastball will be critical over the long haul of his first full season, and he will have to work extremely hard to maintain his velocity as well.
At only 21-years old, Wise will be given every opportunity to move slowly and develop his secondary offerings. The Tigers have the luxury of being patient with raw prospects like Brendan, and I expect them to do just that. Wise could face some big bumps early on this spring, but things should smooth out as he further learns his craft.
Mark Anderson covers the Tigers' minor league system and all of minor league baseball for TigsTown.com. He can be reached at Mark@TigsTown.com.