With the 54th pick in last June’s draft, the Milwaukee Brewers selected RHP Devin Williams out of Hazelwood West High School. The 6’3” 172 pound Missouri product has a lot of projection, but very little that we actually know about him.
What we do know is he loves his fastball, and the Brewers love to let him use it. He can run his fastball anywhere from 91-95, and, once he adds some weight, could move up to the 93-97 range. Williams primarily used his fastball in his first taste of pro ball this past summer. The Brewers had Williams work on his fastball command, and had him throwing fastballs regardless of the situation. Despite throwing almost exclusively fastballs, Williams was pretty successful in rookie ball. He struckout over 10 per 9 innings, and posted a 3.20 FIP. He did struggle with his control, however, walking 5.71 per 9. Going forward Williams will have to work on his secondary pitches along with his fastball command.
He has a change-up that projects as a plus pitch, and a curveball that flashes plus on occasion. If Williams can shore up his command of his fastball, and smooth out what are some quirky mechanics, these pitches will be able to play up beyond their individual grades.
It is extremely difficult to project Devin Williams going forward, because we haven’t really seen his full repertoire at work in professional ball. He is one that Brewers fans can dream on going forward. There is top of the rotation stuff there, but he is very far away from the Majors, and he must shore up his command. I expect Williams’ command to improve as he smooths out his mechanics, and continues to gain experience in professional ball.
His ceiling is a top of the rotation stud, but he also may never reach the high minors. For a system that lacks upside in the pitching department, Williams is one to watch.