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Prospect quick hit: Reid Detmers

A rare Angels pitching prospect

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MLB: Los Angeles Angels at Seattle Mariners Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Just yesterday, Wick dusted off the old typewriter and scrawled some words about what it may take for a team to land one of the top three starting pitchers the Reds have to offer, if they’re seriously serious about being seriously cheap and seriously lame. Particularly, Wick theorized about the potential fits for the Reds and, specifically, the Reds when it comes to dealing Luis Castillo. I thought it was interesting and thought-provoking, in that it provoked the thought of, “who is Reid Detmers?” out of me. If I were as smart and savvy when it comes to having a big baseball brain like Wick, I’d tease out the same thought exercise for, say, Sonny Gray.

Since I’m not that smart, I thought I’d look up what the scouting world had to say about Reid Detmers and #aggregate that for the readers here at Red Reporter that may, like me, not be all that familiar with the southpaw from the Angel system.

It should be noted here that I don’t think either of us are necessarily saying the Reds should move Castillo, and if they do, that they have to for Detmers. I believe Wick was merely unfurling the thread, and I’m merely just taking that thread and knitting a quilt.

Eh, more like a scarf, maybe.

I have no knowledge about anything the Reds may be thinking, nor do I have much of an opinion on whether Detmers is the best they could do, or if the Angels even care about Luis Castillo (though, they probably do and they should).

In other words, I have no money and am talking to no one. I’m just blogging a blog.


Reid Detmers, LHP

Height: 6’2” Weight: 210lbs Age: 22

High School: Glenwood HS (Illinois)
College: University of Louisville

Drafted: By Atlanta, in the 32nd round of the 2017 Draft; and then again by the Los Angeles Angels in the 1st round (10th overall) of the (abbreviated) 2020 Draft.

Detmers comes into the league at an incredibly weird (and incredibly hard) time for amateurs to come into the league. His 2020 junior season at Louisville was cut short due to the season being cancelled by COVID-19. He was able to officially pitch 22 innings that season, as there was no minor leagues in 2020, either.

Still, he started the 2021 season in AA for the Rocket City Trash Pandas and pitched 54 innings of 3.50 ERA ball that was propped up with a 16.2 K/9 and a 1.167 WHIP. He parlayed that to a trip up to AAA for a start with the Salt Lake Bees, before getting called up to The Show for a start on August 1st. He spent four starts and 19 innings with the Angels through the first three weeks of August, but landed on the COVID-19 inactive list and missed most of the rest of the season. He reemerged in Salt Lake City at the end of September for a 2 inning tune up, and then pitched another 1.2 innings for the Angels in October.

For the 2021 season, Detmers posted a 3.19 ERA between AA and AAA in 62 innings, with a 15.7 K/9, 2.8 BB/9, 1.145 WHIP and 1.5 HR/9. He managed 20.2 innings pitched in Los Angeles, good for a 7.40 ERA, 8.3 K/9, 4.8 BB/9, and 1.790 WHIP.

Detmers has made his way up to number 23 on MLB Pipeline’s top 100 prospect list, though I’m not entirely sure that this is an up-to-date for 2022 list. The write-up still pretty much exclusively mentions the draft and the alternate camp, with no mention of the actual 2021 season. Maybe the MLB Pipeline folks are locked out, too.

That said, here’s the money line from the writeup:

Detmers has the chance to have a solid four-pitch mix, with his feel for using all of them ahead of how the stuff grades out. He’ll usually throw his fastball in the 90-94 mph range and was more consistently at the upper end of that spectrum with the Angels after he signed. It plays up because of deception and Detmers’ ability to command the pitch well, something that was on display in the summer and fall, particularly after he settled in. His 72-76 mph curveball is his best offering, a plus out pitch with good shape. He uses an effective sinking changeup and he worked on developing a slider he threw occasionally in college after signing, giving him another very serviceable pitch.

Not bad!

As Wick mentioned in his piece yesterday, the Athletic’s Keith Law has Detmers ranked 19th overall, though I don’t currently have a sub to the Athletic and haven’t actually read Keith’s opinion. It must be relatively high, obviously. Expect him to drop 15-20 spots if traded to the Reds.

Our friends at Fangraphs have him a little lower, at number 42. They see him as more of a fourth starter type, albeit big league ready. They agree that the curve is easily the best pitch, and trust that he has the command to continue throwing strikes to big league hitters, despite them squaring up the fastball with ease in 2021. Read all about it here.

All in all, he’s not a bad prospect to target, and the Reds near-term track record with developing pitchers is solid. Though, there’s been a lot of turnover recently in those departments, so YMMV when it comes to future development. Still, Derek Johnson’s the man in charge here, so I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt for the time being.