Kevin Gallo is a longtime reader and contributor here on Cubs Den. What you may not know about him is he is an aspiring scout and avid amateur baseball fan. Kevin does a lot of legwork and has seen many of the Cubs potential draft picks including Lucas Giolito, Max Fried, and Kyle Zimmer. He's also had conversations with scouts and has even spotted some top Cubs personnel in the stands.
Recently Kevin got a chance to see Mark Appel and was kind enough to write up his report and share it with me...so I'll share it with all of you...
I also added a video courtesy of Bullpen Banter.
Pitcher name: Mark Appel
Physical: Appel is tall, limber and loose-limbed. He looks like he could gain about another 10 to 15lbs. This could help him gain endurance and ability to maintain his velocity into the later innings.
Mechanics: His mechanics are smooth and easy. He throws from a 3/4 arm slot with good arm action. I have heard that he had problem from other scouts repeating his delivery, but this was not the case on Friday. He was able to stay on top of his pitches and had very repeatable mechanics.
Fastball: His fastball started at 96-98 in the 1st inning. It has good life and he had very good command of it. In the 2nd inning He started using his 2 seamer. His velocity dropped to 92-93 mph range but had a sinking action which was very effective. His was able to maintain his velocity at 92-95 mph through the 7th inning when he was lifted. His 4 and 2 seamers were both very effective pitches and rarely missed with them throughout the game.
Secondary Pitches: Appel’s secondary stuff was also very good, his slider (84-86mphs) show signs of being a plus pitch. It had a hard bit and is without a doubt a possible swing and miss pitch. It is still a little inconsistent and at times looked a little more like a slurve.
He had good arm action on his Changeup (82-83 mph) and looks like it is developing into a good above average pitch. He threw it with good command and had some swings and misses with it.
Summary: He showed good command over most of his pitches throughout the whole outing. His body shows the ability to hold velocity through the game. If he can gain a little more weight he may gain a little more velocity and keep it though the whole game. The secondary stuff is what will decide his fate. If his Changeup continues to develop and he can be more consistent with his Slider, you are looking at a front end starter. If these things don’t happen he looks to be a # 3 to 4 starter. I don’t see him not being able to start at the next level.