2015 MLB Draft Non-Scouting Report: Kyle Funkhouser – RHP – Louisville

 

by Burke Granger

2015 MLB Draft Prospect: Kyle Funkhouser – RHP – Louisville. 6’3″ 225. Class: Junior. DOB: 3.16.94. Last Drafted: Never
Regarded as the 360th best draft prospect in the 2012 Draft by Baseball America as a prep star in Oak Forest, Ill., 30 minutes south of Chicago, Funkhouser went undrafted and followed through on his commitment to Louisville.
While working primarily in relief as a freshman, Funkhouser still managed 6 starts that season and accounted for Louisville’s only shutout that season (against Villanova).  Funkhouser got his first taste of Omaha as a freshman, but it wouldn’t be his last.  The Cardinals 2013 trip to the College World Series was their first since 2007.  While Louisville went two and out in 2013, Funkhouser saw relief action in an 11-4 loss to Oregon State putting together a 2.1IP, 2H 0R, 0ER, 2BB, 4K line.
The Cardinals would return to Omaha in 2014, this time with Funkhouser as their ace.  Though cruising to a 13-3, 1.95 ERA season with a K/9 of 9.15, the Funkhouser and the Cardinals were still ousted in two consecutive games in Omaha.  Starting the opening game against eventual champion Vanderbilt, Funkhouser’s final line was 6IP 6H 4R 4ER 6BB 5K, taking the loss.
While still effective in this, his junior season, Funkhouser has not been the same pitcher he was last season.  In observing Funkhouser, I was impressed by the stuff, easy velocity, and a sharp breaking ball, but the command was definitely off.  Fastballs were left up in the zone and curveballs were bounced.  My hunch is that the cold was effecting Funkahouser’s grip early in the season, as he hit 5 batters in a three start stretch from 2/20-3/6.
While Funkhouser has cut his BB/9 rate from 4.86 in 2014 to 3.84 in 2015, his H/9 has jumped from 6.36 to 7.87.
Statistics *through 5.27.15
YEAR
CLASS
W-L
ERA
G
S
IP
H
K
BB
2013
Fr.  5-1
2.14
22
1
54.2
43
55
25
2014
So.  13-3
1.94
18
0
120.1
85
122
65
2015
Jr. 7-5
3.29
15
0
98.1
86
93
42
It’s important to note that getting one live look at a player doesn’t provide nearly enough information to produce a true scouting report, but that’s not going to stop me from reporting what I saw anyway.  It’s also important to note that I’m not a scout.  I don’t have the knowledge or training that they have.  I do however talk to scouts, and while scouts typically reserve their reports for their employer, I can share my thoughts on the player with you, the reader.
REPERTOIRE: 
Fastball: Funkhouser sat 90-91 mph for the first few innings, but once he loosened up on this cold February day, he worked at 93-94 mph in the middle innings.  On this particular day, the pitch was straight and often left up in the zone.
Slider:  Often used as his out pitch against right handed batters, Funkhouser’s slider is sharp with late break at 81-82 mph.  While hosting Xavier and several times while I’ve seen Funkhouser on TV, he hasn’t shown a tendency to throw a breaking ball for a strike earlier in the count.
Changeup: Funkhouser didn’t throw, nor did he need many changeups against Xavier. The few times he did throw it, he held the pitch too long, missing his release point and causing the pitch to skip.
DELIVERY
Funkhouser does a good job of repeating his delivery so I don’t believe that’s the cause of his shaky command.  I chalk this up to a release point issue.  The grip could be the underlying cause, which isn’t uncommon for pitchers in cold weather environments.  For a big man, Funkhouser fields his position well.  From the stretch, he’s in the 1.25-1.35 second range to home plate which shouldn’t make him particularly susceptible to teams running on him.
FUTURE

 

Funkhouser entered the year as top 5 overall prospect with potential to go #1 overall.  That appears to be out of the question now, despite many any his preseason peers going down with injury.  While Funkhouser hasn’t taken the step forward many have hoped, he’s still near certain first round selection with a chance to go as high as 8 to the White Sox, his childhood favorite team.  I see Funkhouser as a mid rotation innings eater and a safe bet to be a major leaguer.
Advertisements

One thought on “2015 MLB Draft Non-Scouting Report: Kyle Funkhouser – RHP – Louisville

  1. Pingback: College Prospect Roundup: Week 3 | Prospect Junkies

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s