2022 MLB Draft: Washington Nationals draft LHP Jake Bennett again; 45th overall in 2nd Round

Washington’s Nationals chosen left-handed pitcher Jake Bennett out of highschool, within the thirty ninth Spherical in 2019, taking the southpaw with the 1,173rd general choose, however he opted to go to the College of Oklahoma, becoming a member of highschool teammate Cade Cavalli with the Sooners within the season Cavalli was drafted by the Nats twenty second general within the 1st Spherical in 2020.

Had somebody instructed Bennett again in 2019 he would find yourself getting chosen by the Nationals once more, with the forty fifth general choose within the 2nd spherical this time, and would find yourself in the identical group as his highschool and faculty teammate?

“Man, I’d have thought they had been loopy, I imply, what are the chances?” Bennett mentioned final evening, when he spoke with reporters on a Zoom name after he was picked by the Nats once more.

“It was fairly cool to be picked by them once more, however I imply, simply plenty of pleasure and able to get again to work,” Bennett mentioned.

“Bennett, 21,” the Nationals wrote in a press launch on final evening’s choose, “went 10-4 with a 3.69 ERA in 20 video games (19 begins) throughout his redshirt sophomore season at Oklahoma in 2022. He struck out 133 batters and walked simply 22 in 117.0 innings pitched. He acquired second-team All-America honors from Baseball America and D1Baseball.com and third-team honors from Excellent Recreation. He was named First-Staff All-Massive 12 Convention and to the Massive 12 All-Match Staff.”

“The primary time they drafted me was out of highschool, clearly,” Bennett mentioned when requested how he’s grown as a pitcher since 2019. “I feel I’ve come a good distance since highschool. My physique has gotten higher, I’ve gotten stronger, extra athletic, continued to enhance upon my mechanics, a bit little bit of pitch design.

“I feel my growth has actually simply form of been an entire factor. Not only one particular space.”

Doing the short math on the stats above, Bennett issued simply 1.69 BB/9 in his 20 video games and 117 IP this season, with 10.23 Ok/9 for the Sooners, and the southpaw mentioned he’s comfy within the zone, throwing strikes and difficult hitters.

“Yeah, for certain, strike-throwing has all the time form of come pure to me,” Bennett defined.

“I’ve by no means actually had a problem with not throwing strikes. I positively suppose it helps. I attempt to assault hitters, actually replenish the zone, and simply let my stuff play.”

And that stuff? What’s Bennett working with and the way does he assault hitters at his finest?

“I’d say for essentially the most half I’m fairly fastball dominant,” he mentioned. “Bought good command of that, I can throw it to both aspect of the plate, so far as offspeed goes, changeup has positively been form of my really feel pitch, really feel I can throw that in any depend, after which when issues are going good, I’m mixing in a slider form of as an out-pitch to lefties.

“And curveball, extra of simply flip it, present it, so hitters respect it. However yeah…”

“He’ll present you nearly every part,” Assistant Director of Novice Scouting Mark Baca mentioned of the Nats’ second spherical choose.

“Supply, every part is clear, velocity, secondary stuff.”

“One other large man, 6’6’’, 235, innings-eater body,” Assistant GM and VP of Scouting ops Kris Kline mentioned final evening. “Good supply. Repeatable supply. Fastball is as much as 96, he’ll dwell at about 93, good life down within the zone.

“Changeup is his calling card. And he’s received a median to solid-average main league slider, that he must proceed to develop. There are occasions when it’s actually good, however he must discover ways to commit to every one.”