Jared Kelley might be able to land the Chicago White Sox a really good player.
Pitching is a hot commodity among every team. Team’s like the Los Angeles Dodgers are competitive every season because their farm system is stocked with it. This is why Jared Kelley is the name most teams will be drawn to when discussing trades with the White Sox.
The White Sox selected Kelley with the 47th pick of the 2020 MLB draft. At the time, he was considered one of the biggest steals of the draft. He signed for $3 million which is considered first-round money despite being drafted in the second round.
Kelley was the most imposing high school pitcher in the nation in 2019, winning Gatorade Player of the Year. During the Area Code Games, scouts marveled at the clinic he put on while on the mound. In 12 innings, he only allowed one hit and 34 of the 36 outs he recorded were via the strikeout.
Some evaluators even went as far as to say it was the best performance in the history of the event. Kelley can hit 98 mph with a fastball that has running action. It is his highest-graded pitch at 65 on a 20-80 scale. He also has a solid changeup to compliment it.
Unfortunately, control was an issue for Kelley when he hit the professional level. He had a 7.61 ERA with a 2.11 WHIP in 12 starts last season and walks were the main culprit. He handed out 26 free passes and hit an additional two batters. He also dealt with some elbow issues which could be another factor in why he could never establish a rhythm.
He is still young and has a strong build. If he can further develop his slider, he could be a major asset for whatever organization he is in. His effortless delivery should have plenty of teams eager to work with him if he is dangled on the trade market.