Image: Courtesy Florida Athletics The Cleveland Indians selected Jack Leftwich – Right-handed Pitcher with the seventh-round pick (216th overall) in the 2021 MLB Draft. Jack Leftwich – Right-handed Pitcher School: […]
Image: Courtesy Florida Athletics
The Cleveland Indians selected Jack Leftwich – Right-handed Pitcher with the seventh-round pick (216th overall) in the 2021 MLB Draft.
Jack Leftwich – Right-handed Pitcher
Height: 6’4; Weight: 220
Jack Leftwich Pre-Draft Rankings:
IBI – round 5-7
Prospects Live – 167
Baseball America – 209
MLB.com – 156
Willie Hood’s Analysis:
He was initially drafted in the 39th round of the 2017 MLB Draft by the Detroit Tigers; the righty opted to honor his college commitment to the University of Florida. The Gators’ swingman pitched in a variety of roles over his four seasons at UF. Leftwich appeared in a whopping 64 games, including 35 starts throughout his collegiate career. In 2021, he appeared in 23 grames, making 6 starts while recording 5 saves. Leftwich punched out 74 batters (9.94 K9), with 21 walks (2.82 BB9) over 67 innings pitched.
While Leftwich’s role is to be determined by his new organization, it stands to reason he could be moved to the bullpen, where he could advance quickly. The right-hander is an intense competitor with plenty of experience in high leverage situations because of his exposure and usage while at Florida. There is effort, intensity, and evil intentions when the righty is on the bump. He utilizes a quick whippy arm action from a three-quarters delivery. Stuff-wise, his fastball sits low-to-mid 90’s and touches 96. His slider is inconsistent but could be an above-average to plus pitch with development. Leftwich rounds out his repertoire with a fringey changeup and shows above-average control.
Justin Lada’s Take:
Leftwich has a bit of a effortful delivery and tough finish on his knee, but he’s up to 96 and has filled a variety of pitching roles in Florida. He’s got good arm speed and his fastball/slider combo give him two above average offerings. The changeup lags behind those two but he has above average control and average command, so he could very well track as a relief option, possibly a multi-inning reliever. Cleveland may give him a chance to start initially and see if they can help get his changeup up to around average and utilize his durable frame. He could move faster in the bullpen with the fastball/slider and those two pitches could be devastating for him as an eventual setup man playing up in shorter stints.
RHP JACK LEFTWICH
University of Florida junior ranked seventh in the SEC in opposing batting average (.208), tied-ninth in ERA (3.36), and T10th in saves (team-high five). For the 2021 season went 7-4 with a 3.36 ERA in 24 games/6 starts (69.2IP, 54H, 26ER, 22BB, 78SO). Was SEC Academic Honor Roll, 2019 thru 2021, and hails from Orlando, FL. Previously selected by the Tigers in the 39th round of the 2017 MLB Draft.