Scouting Yankees Prospect #10: Ian Clarkin

The Yankees drafted left-handed pitcher Ian Clarkin in the first round of the 2013 MLB Draft out of Madison High School in California. He's battled some nagging injuries early in his career thus far but shows the kind of safe projection, high ceiling combination that makes him one of the most intriguing long-term pitching prospects in the organization.

Vital Statistics:
Name: Ian Clarkin
Position: Pitcher
DOB: February 14, 1995
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 205
Bats: Left
Throws: Left

Repertoire. Fastball, Curveball, Changeup.

Fastball. When he's going right Clarkin normally sits mostly in the 91-94 mph range with his four-seam fastball, one that shows excellent natural movement and tailing action. Because of the movement opposing batters have a real hard time barreling him up. He hasn't hit much higher than that on the radar gun at the professional level and it's because of his inability to log a lot of innings thus far. Boasting a solid build, however, the prevailing thought in the scouting community is that he has a very good chance to add velocity in the coming years as he continues to get stronger and build up his arm strength. Important note: the average velocity probably won't increase much, if at all, but the higher-end velocity has the chance to improve. Despite his lack of innings so far, he shows above average control and command of his fastball, and it's an attribute that should only be enhanced the more he pitches.

Other Pitches. It's pick your poison time for opponents when facing Clarkin. He entered professional baseball already armed with a plus curveball, a true plus strikeout pitch that not only shows great 12 to 6 diving action but it's a power pitch too, one that sits mostly in the 77-81 mph range. However, while he was better known for his curveball at the start of his career, it's his rapidly developing above average to plus changeup that he's actually favored as his main go-to pitch recently. Once a rather non-existent pitch, it's now one that shows tremendous fade and depth, and like his fastball and curveball it's a pitch he can command better than most of his peers.

Pitching: What makes Clarkin so effective outside of possessing three above average to plus pitches that he can command rather well is his herky-jerky delivery, one that provides a lot of deception so batters not only have to deal with better than average velocity and movement but they have a hard time picking up his pitches overall because of his unique delivery. Because of the moving parts, however, there is still a lot of room for improvement in his command overall; it's solid now but has a lot of ceiling left. What ties his entire game together too is his moxie on the mound. He goes right after batters and brings a cerebral element to pitching seldom found in hurlers his age. He has a knack for reading batters' tendencies, pitching to all four quadrants of the plate, and has the array of pitches to keep hitters guessing. He is very athletic too so he fields his position well.

Projection. Clarkin has the tools in place to be a front-half of the rotation big league starting pitcher someday; three above average to plus pitches, better than average command, deception, moxie, advanced level of pitch-ability, and bulldog makeup. There will be some further work needed smoothing out his delivery and improving his already solid command for him to tap that kind of potential, but more than anything he simply needs to avoid the training room, get his experience and log as many innings as possible because he really doesn't have a glaring weakness in his game; he just needs to continue pitching.

ETA. 2017. Clarkin's ETA is mostly predicated on his ability to stay healthy. Should he be able to do that he should be a relatively quick riser through the minor leagues.


Year

Team

W-L

SV

IP

H

BB

SO

ERA

2014

Tampa

1-0

0

5.0

7

1

4

1.80

2014

Charleston

0-2

0

70.0

64

22

71

3.21

2013

GCL Yankees1

0-2

0

5.0

5

4

4

10.80




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