2020 MLB Draft: Scouting Colorado Rockies second-round pick Chris McMahon

DENVER, COLORADO, - MARCH 26: People cycle in front of Coors Field on what was to be opening day for Major League Baseball on March 26, 2020 in Denver, Colorado. Major League Baseball has postponed the start of its season indefinitely due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
DENVER, COLORADO, - MARCH 26: People cycle in front of Coors Field on what was to be opening day for Major League Baseball on March 26, 2020 in Denver, Colorado. Major League Baseball has postponed the start of its season indefinitely due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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MIAMI, FL – APRIL 14: The ball being used for the ceremonial first pitch by University of Miami receiver Braxton Berrios is shown before action between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on April 14, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by B51/Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL – APRIL 14: The ball being used for the ceremonial first pitch by University of Miami receiver Braxton Berrios is shown before action between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on April 14, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by B51/Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

The Colorado Rockies’ selection of Chris McMahon in the second round of the 2020 MLB Draft helped them score the third-best draft class, per MLB.com

When the Colorado Rockies entered the second round, everyone was talking about how they had not yet taken a pitcher yet with their first two picks and had chosen only high schoolers. Well, when the 46th pick rolled around, they quelled everyone’s thirst for a pitcher and a college player, helping secure the third-best draft class according to MLB.com. The same experts even believe Chris McMahon was Colorado’s best pick of the entire draft.

McMahon is no stranger to the MLB Draft as he was a 33rd-round draft pick by the Atlanta Braves in 2017. So when this year’s abbreviated version rolled around, he knew pretty much what to expect.

The University of Miami pitcher’s 31-round jump shows why, when you’re a late-round flyer pick out of high school, you should go to college and hone your craft.

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When he was coming out of high school, McMahon was throwing consistently around 92-93 and touched 95 with a heavy fastball and big curveball that he couldn’t consistently put in the strike-zone. Flash forward three years, and, boy, did he grow up. He now sits at 95-96 and can touch 98 with heavy sink on the fastball, and scrapped the curve for a high spin rate, big break slider. He also figured out his command, as evidenced by striking out 123 and walking only 37 during his three years in college (112.1 IP). That included 38 Ks to only five walks in just four 2020 starts. He also only gave up four total home runs during his entire Miami career.

I still haven’t mentioned his changeup (which is average-plus as well) to round out a full arsenal for a pitcher I believe will stick as a starter. The Rockies have shown a penchant for showing patience with arms some view as a “tweener” type and letting them fully develop a third pitch to complete their repertoire.

I believe the “tweener” label is misguided at best, and also the reason why this high-end arm was still available when the Rockies made their selection.

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