The Orioles acquired Wynn Pelzer from the Padres in return for Miguel Tejada prior to the 2010 trade deadline. At the time of the deal, Pelzer had just been moved to the bullpen after struggling with his command as a starter. The Orioles kept him as a reliever when he pitched with Bowie in 2010, and he performed well, striking out 20 while walking just 7 in 20 Eastern League innings.
Despite his success, the Orioles decided to once again try him as a starter and moved him into Bowie’s 2011 rotation. He has been a different pitcher since. However, he’s still a prospect who could affect some MLB odds one day.
Pelzer was our #18 prospect last year.
Don: Pelzer has always been a power pitcher who lived off a low to mid 90s fastball and slider combination, with the ability to keep the ball on the ground. He can flat out sling it out of his hands.
He has an electric arm and bottom driven foundation that allows him to get maximum effort with little pressure on his arm. At this stage, he seems more comfortable against right handed batters, so that the biting slider can make the hitters’ knees buckle — when on its game.
Pelzer needs to continue to tighten his command. He must find a consistent release point and the proper extension and follow through to effectively repeat his delivery.
He has explosive stuff and the ability to throw strikes efficiently would make it difficult for the opposition to square up on his stuff, and would maybe even induce a higher ratio of missed bats.
If Pelzer makes the necessary mechanical adjustments to improve his command, his two pitches alone — fastball and slider — can make him a quality 6/7/8 inning reliever. But he must fine tune his approach and get ahead early in the count more frequently in order for the slider to become a true weapon.
Assuming he’s healthy, Pelzer has a very good chance to see the major leagues at some point in 2012, even if it’s as a September call up.