The Milwaukee Brewers selected big right-hander Cody Ponce with their second round pick (55th overall) in the 2015 MLB June Amateur Draft from Cal Poly-Pomona. The 6’6″, 240 pound California product flashed mucho potential in college and didn’t disappoint in two stops in the Brewers minor league chain.
Ponce began his professional career at Rookie League Helena and was perfect in his first start, retiring all six batters in a two-inning stint. He struggled in his next start, but moved up anyway (according to plan) to Class A Wisconsin in early July.
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The Brewers appeared to be confused as to what Ponce’s role would be, as he started seven games and pitched at the back end of five others. He was successful in both, going 2-and-1 in seven starts and earning three saves in five relief appearances.
In 51 innings at both levels, Ponce had a WHIP of 1.098, had a K:BB ratio of 4.4, and allowed only one home run.
Ponce features a sinking fastball in the 92-94 range, and has a ‘plus’ cutter that hits 87-89. He also throws a curveball and a change-up, but they require a little work before Ponce can be considered a ‘four pitch’ hurler.
The 21-year-old could possibly start at A+ Brevard County next season, unless the Brewers’ brass thinks he needs a bit more seasoning at Class A Wisconsin.
Regardless of where he starts, Ponce could pitch at Miller Park as soon as 2018, and depending on his career path, could be a mid-rotation starter or a late-inning reliever.
Time will tell, but Cody Ponce should have a solid major league career for the Milwaukee Brewers.