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Scouting report: Angels' Reid Detmers

No. 10 overall selection on the fast track to The Show
Reid Detmers has amassed 76 strikeouts and just 14 walks over 41 innings this season. (Javier Sanchez/Rocket City Trash Pandas)
June 29, 2021's Scouting Report series spotlights players who are just starting their professional careers, focusing on what the experts are projecting for these young phenoms. Here's a look at second-ranked Angels prospect Reid Detmers. For more player journeys on The Road to The Show, click here.'s Scouting Report series spotlights players who are just starting their professional careers, focusing on what the experts are projecting for these young phenoms. Here's a look at second-ranked Angels prospect Reid Detmers. For more player journeys on The Road to The Show, click here.

While the coronavirus pandemic that shortened the 2020 college season and canceled the Minor League campaign delayed the beginning of a lot of young Draft picks' professional careers, the pause actually might have put Reid Detmers on a fast track to the Majors.

The 2020 No. 10 overall selection was limited to just four starts with Louisville that year, when he went 3-0 with a 1.23 ERA and amassed 48 strikeouts over 22 innings. That was after a stellar sophomore campaign in 2019, when he led the nation with 13 wins and was second with 167 strikeouts over 113 1/3 innings. More importantly, though, the left-hander spent those two seasons trying to get a feel for a slider. It never really clicked, but when he reported to Anaheim's alternate training site in Long Beach shortly after joining his new organization, things changed.

“The alternate site helped me a lot,” Detmers told “I created a new pitch with my slider and I really got to work on it a whole lot. It’s become one of my favorite pitches to throw.”

At 21, Detmers was one of the youngest Angels players to report to big league camp in the spring. But the talent that kept him atop Draft boards last year was immediately evident, and armed with a new tool in his already impressive arsenal, the southpaw quickly caught the attention of the organization.

“I think he plays like he belongs here already,” Angels manager Joe Maddon told in March. “We believe he’ll be able to help us at some point this year. He really carries himself in a way beyond his years.”

Detmers made a pair of Cactus League appearances, and the only blemish was a solo home run given up to the White Sox on March 13. He also fanned a pair and issued one walk over two spring frames.

Since reporting to Double-A Rocket City to open the Minor League season, MLB Pipeline's No. 57 overall prospect has only fortified his case to be in the Angels' rotation sooner than later. The Illinois native took the ball for the Trash Pandas in the franchise's inaugural game at AT&T Field on May 5 and flashed a fastball that touched 95 mph with a plus-plus mid-70s curveball, a changeup with sinking action and his new slider. Since then, Detmers has taken the hill eight more times for Rocket City, and over that span, he has tossed an immaculate inning and notched double-digit strikeouts four times. His last time out, he delivered a 16-punchout performance over six frames.

"He’s a young guy who’s been taught well, and he’s got that status of being considered a professional baseball player in the way that he acts and responds to adversity," said Rocket City skipper Jay Bell. "For him to step into this level of baseball, where you’re a phone call away from going to the big leagues, he’s done a great job, he’s learned here, and it’s nice to see a guy that is a grown up out there.

"I’m looking forward to watching his progression. I think he’s going to be an extraordinary pitcher.”

The second-ranked Angels prospect is sporting a 3.95 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP with 76 strikeouts and 14 walks over 41 innings this season -- good for a 16.7 K/9 on the year. Detmers registered 30 of those whiffs over his last two starts -- spanning 12 innings -- and opponents have batted .237 against him.

So whenever that call comes to join The Show, the 6-foot-2, 210-pound lefty believes he will be ready.

"I feel great, body feels great,” Detmers told reporters. “I can definitely handle a workload. But that's not my decision. It's whatever the staff has planned for me. Whatever they have to do, I respect it and I'm hoping for the best."

Here's what the experts at MLB Pipeline have to say about Detmers:

Scouting grades (20-80 scale)


"Prior to 2020, the Angels had taken college players in the first round in four of the previous six Drafts. All but one of them, lefty Sean Newcomb, had been hitters. Detmers became their second college southpaw in seven Drafts when they took the Louisville standout No. 10 overall after he had established himself as one of the best college arms in the class. He was the second left-hander from that crop to get taken in 2020, after Asa Lacy went No. 4 overall, and then was as good as advertised during his time at both the Angels’ alternate camp and in instructional league play.

Detmers has the chance to have a solid four-pitch mix, with his feel for using all of them ahead of how the stuff grades out. He’ll usually throw his fastball in the 90-94 mph range and was more consistently at the upper end of that spectrum with the Angels after he signed. It plays up because of deception and Detmers’ ability to command the pitch well, something that was on display in the summer and fall, particularly after he settled in. His 72-76 mph curveball is his best offering, a plus out pitch with good shape. He uses an effective sinking changeup and he worked on developing a slider he threw occasionally in college after signing, giving him another very serviceable pitch.

Detmers should be able to continue to fill up the strike zone thanks to a delivery he repeats consistently. His pitchability helped him strike out 47 batters in 30 innings at the alternate camp and that feel for his craft should allow him to move fairly quickly through the Angels system to a career as a durable mid-rotation starter in the big leagues."

Rob Terranova is a contributor to Follow him on Twitter @RobTnova24.