Nats 10th pick preview, Chad Jenkins

1996907Earlier this week we spoke about the possibility of the Nationals taking Chad Jenkins with their 10th overall pick.

We promised a more in depth scouting report, so here it is:

Chad Jenkins is a Georgia grown pitcher with a head on his shoulders and a cannon on his arm. Graduating in the top five percent of his high school class at Cherokee High School, he was named the Cherokee County Player of the Year and was named as one of Georgia’s top 50 prep prospects.

Jenkins enjoyed success his freshman and sophomore years at Kennesaw State. His freshman year he posted a 2-3 record with a 4.02 ERA while working mainly out of the bullpen. In 40 innings pitched he struck out 44, walked 20 and allowed 45 hits.

His sophomore year he made the move from the bullpen to the rotation, recording a 5-5 record with a 3.96 ERA. In 88.2 innings he had 78 strikeouts, but only surrendered 13 walks and 91 hits.

His Junior year however saw Jenkins true transformation from a gifted but unmolded pitcher into a true first round prospect. This season he has posted an 8-1 record with a 2.5 ERA and 98 strikeouts in 92 innings, earning the Atlantic Sun Conference Pitcher of the Year Award. He was also just recently named to be third team All American.

Entering 2009 Jenkins was the number two starter for Kennesaw state behind top prospect Kyle Heckathorn, however through the course of the spring Jenkins has out dazzled and out performed his teammate and has passed him on most team’s draft boards. He is considered not too far off from the Majors and a workhorse who could contribute to a rotation as early as the middle of 2010.

Scouts say Jenkinns constantly throws his fastball, which he splits between two and four seams, in the 90-94 range. He uses the four-seamer to paint the corners and a hard heavy two-seamer, with late sink, to induce lots of groundballs.

His plus changeup is considered a major league out pitch, which is consistently thrown in the 80 MPH range with a good amount of sinking action. He supplements his trailing fastball and change with a sharp breaking slider, which is also considered an out pitch.

The biggest downside to Jenkins is that his track record is short, and his competition level is rather low pitching in the Atlantic Sun Conference.

His projectable’ s however offset his lack of a consistent past. At 6 foot 4, 235 pounds, Jenkins looks to be a career workhorse in the mold of a Scott Ericson or a Cuck Nagy. He certainly could be an excellent compliment to Steven Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann.