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Name: Robby Snelling
School: McQueen High School Reno, NV/Commitment to Louisiana State University(LSU)
Height/Weight: 6’3” 220
In addition to being a top-pitching prospect, Robby Snelling is also a highly coveted football recruit. The 6-3 220 pounder out of McQueen High School in Reno, NV, decided to commit to LSU because of a longtime relationship with current baseball coach Jay Johnson. However, Snelling may go high enough in the upcoming draft to make playing either sport in college an afterthought.
With his large frame and outside linebacker mentality, one would guess that Snelling features a big fastball, and he does. He consistently rushes the ball to the plate at 94 MPH and tops out at 97. Surprisingly, that isn’t his best pitch. His upper 70’s curveball has a big break that generates a ton of swing and miss. His infrequently used changeup projects to major league average, giving him a third pitch that puts him in the potential starter category.
Another plus for Snelling is that he consistently pounds the strike zone. His sizeable frame indicates he can handle a starter’s workload, and throwing from the left side is always a positive.
Why Would the White Sox Draft Robby Snelling?
Snelling has the big frame and power pitcher profile that the White Sox crave. The fact that he’s a left-hander enhances the intrigue. His size and profile are similar to 2020 second round draft pick Jared Kelley.
In recent years, the White Sox have dipped into the high school ranks for pitching prospects paying big bonuses to Kelley, Matthew Thompson and Andrew Dalquist. These pitchers have not developed as quickly as the White Sox would like and high school pitchers selected in the first round have a less than stellar track record. Snelling doubling as a football player shouldn’t scare off the White Sox, but it may make him tough to sign, which may be the most significant factor in the team’s decision-making process. If Snelling is available at the 26th selection, a big left-handed starter with a plus breaking pitch may be too enticing for the White Sox to pass up.
If reading the above information on Snelling leaves you indecisive, you’re not alone. Opinions on where Snelling will be drafted vary widely. Last week’s mock draft issued by MLB Pipeline has him moving up the board to just outside the top ten. Previous versions by the same entity had him going to the White Sox at #26. Other major publications have him falling out of the first round. With the draft approximately six weeks away, expect those projections to change several more times.
- MLB: Los Angeles Angels (13)
- Baseball America: Cardinals (22)
- ESPN: Colorado Rockies (31)
- The Athletic: Chicago White Sox (26)
- Prospects Live: Not among Top 40 draft picks