Hey guys, I took a run down to Greenville a few weeks ago to see the Drive (Red Sox) take on the Rome Braves. Kolby Allard was throwing for Rome and he’s one of the players I was most looking forward to seeing coming into the season.
Allard is about to turn 19, he’s listed 6’1″ 180 lbs, he bats and throws left. Allard (the southern California native) was in the discussion to go in the top 5 in the 2015 draft but back surgery in the Spring frightened off a few teams and the Braves were able to snag him at 14.
Allard’s not a big guy I guessed on the field he was 5’11” 170″. There is projection here but I do wonder if he can carry more than another 10-15 lbs of muscle. He’s athletic and he works fast. He stands on the 1st base side of the rubber. He’s got a simple, low effort repeatable delivery. He utilizes a 3/4 release point and he creates very good deception.
The fastball sat 89-93 (mostly 91-92) and touched 94 once. In the lower quadrants it showed some nice downward bite. The fastball should be an effective ground ball generator. Potential 60, more likely 55.
The 1-6 curve had a very nice shape and sharp bite. This has the potential to be an out pitch and a consistent swing and miss generator. Potential 60 maybe more.
The changeup is clearly his 3rd pitch, it was mostly 83-84 and touched 85 the pitch had some mild sink. He does a good job mimicking the arm speed of the fastball and the speed differential is decent at 8-10 MPH. Potential 50
Sequencing: Allard threw well over 80% fastballs the 1st time through the order and mixed in the occasional hook. 2nd time through he threw a few more changes and hooks but remained fastball dominant.
Command/control: Allard struggled early in my look with finishing the fastball he was up a lot early. But once he settled in he was hitting both corners in the low quadrants much more consistently. He seems to have a lot of confidence in the hook. He throws it in any count and can break it off at the knees or bury it.
Here we get several good looks at Allard’s delivery courtesy of Chris Blessing of Baseball HQ. You can find Chris on Twitter @C_Blessing
Allard was a lot of fun to watch especially once he began to locate the fastball. He has #2 starter upside but is more likely to be a mid. He’s high risk because he’s so far from the majors, he’s had back problems and his slight frame.