Image: Courtesy University of Florida

The Cleveland Indians selected Tommy Mace- Right-handed Starting Pitcher with the Competitive Balance Round B pick (69th overall) in the 2021 MLB Draft.

Tommy Mace – Right-handed Starting Pitcher

School: Florida;
Age: 22.7;
Height: 6’6; Weight: 230;
Throws: Right

Tommy Mace Pre-Draft Rankings:

IBI – 49

Baseball America – 65

Prospects Live – 42 – 45

Willie Hood’s Analysis:

Drafted in the 12th Round of the 2017 MLB Draft by the Cincinnati Reds, the righty spurned the overtures instead attending the University of Florida. He pitched primarily out of the bullpen his freshman season before joining the starting rotation as a sophomore in 2019. The large framed right-hander was draft-eligible once again in 2020 but turned down offers to sign. Instead, he chose to work with Driveline and Kinetic Pro to push himself into round one consideration in 2021. He responded with his career-best season striking out 113 (11.26 K9), walking 21 (2.09 BB9) across 90.1 innings of work.

On the mound, Mace displays plus a five-pitch arsenal featuring two variations of his fastball. Mace has added a high-spin four-seamer that he utilizes up in the zone and a two-seamer (sinker) he uses down in the zone. While the fastball sits low-to-mid 90’s he can reach back for 97 when necessary. The native Floridian utilizes a cutter/slider in the mid-to-upper 80’s. His high spin curveball typically sits in the upper 70’s with his mid-upper 80’s changeup rounding out his pitch mix. Featuring plus control of his repertoire from a three-quarters arm angle, his natural extension down mound adds deception.

Justin Lada’s take:

Mace’s bet on himself kind of paid off. Even as a four year guy at Florida after being drafted in high school in the 12th round and going undrafted last year, landing in Comp B is a good win for him. Even though his fastball is up to 93-95 and touches 97 now, it doesn’t miss that many bats. He did add the four seam and perhaps Cleveland can continue to help him optimize that pitch to get more ride and life at the top of the zone. Previously he was a sinker/slider guy, but Cleveland supposedly had interest in him as a prep player and maybe they saw the commitment to improvement with his kinetics, delivery and pitch design as part of the makeup they liked. The rest of his arsenal all looks or grades out as average or fringe average, so with this pick, Cleveland must think they’re A) going to get him at or below slot, and B) work with some to add a grade to some of those secondaries. His work with increasing the extension on his delivery should help and improved command, something else Cleveland likes – year over year gains in stuff, control, etc. He could end up as a solid mid to back rotation piece with his size and with a few tweaks of his arsenal.

Press Release:

Mace, 22, recently concluded a four-year collegiate career with a 22-7 record and a 4.37 ERA in 62 games/41 starts (269.2IP, 269H, 150ER, 76BB, 258SO) for the Gators. He posted a 4.38 ERA in 15 starts this spring (44ER/90.1IP). The Friday night starter recorded a 1.67 ERA (27.0IP, 21H, 5ER, 26SO) in four starts during the 2020 pandemic-shortened campaign and opted to return for his fourth season in Gainesville. He was selected by Cincinnati (12th round) out of Sunlake High School (Land O’ Lakes, FL) in the 2017 MLB Draft after earning MaxPreps Second Team HS All-American honors. 

Cleveland Scouting Director Scott Barnsby on Tommy Mace:

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