Friday, July 12, 2013

2014 MLB Draft First Look: Jeff Hoffman

Jeff Hoffman RHP 
East Carolina University- Junior
6'4"   185 Lbs. 

To kick off our 2014 draft coverage I will profile East Carolina's Jeff Hoffman, who will likely enter next season as a candidate to go in the top five overall picks. Hoffman bypassed Team USA in favor of playing for the Hyannis Harbor Hawks on the Cape, and he is likely the league's top prospect. Last season Hoffman struck out 84 batters and posted a 3.20 ERA in over a hundred innings of work for the Pirates. 

Hoffman can already dial  his fastball up to 97 and comfortably sat in the 92-95 range this spring, and his 6'4" and 185 lb. frame offers a lot more of projection. If he puts on a lot of weight he could be a guy who hits triple digits someday. In his first start on the Cape he generated a lot of buzz by routinely hitting 96 on the gun and impressing scouts with a plus curve. His flashed an impressive change up at times too, all though he has less command of it than his other offerings. His change gives him him the potential to have three plus pitches in his arsenal. 

Hoffman's biggest area for improvement is with his command. If he develops a better feel for pitching he could really break out and be one of the top pitchers off the board in a year loaded with arms. His stuff and upside is right on par with Rodon, Beede, and Cederoth. 

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