San Diego Padres Draft: Vanderbilt’s Tyler Brown is big time closer to target

(Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)
(Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images) /

Ranked as the 100th best prospect in this class, Vanderbilt’s Tyler Brown could be available to the San Diego Padres in the third or fourth round.

With Kirby Yates hitting the free-agent market this offseason regardless if there’s a season, San Diego Padres general manager AJ Preller may target a future closer for his bullpen. Sure, that’s why he acquired Emilio Pagan in February, but having too many high-leverage pitchers is never a bad thing.

And with the 81st and 109th overall picks in June’s draft, there is the potential for the Padres to take one of the best closers in this class. Tyler Brown is a 6-foot-4, 242-pound junior who collected 17 saves for Vanderbilt’s National Championship team last year.

He made 31 appearances and struck out 65 batters while limiting them to a .193 average. Perhaps more impressive, he walked just nine batters. Having that kind of command at the back end of the bullpen is invaluable.

Before the shutdown, Brown had already made seven appearances, collecting one save and striking out 14 batters in 10.2 innings. He posted a 2.53 ERA during that time while walking just four as well.

He’s already overcome Tommy John surgery and still touches the high 90s on his fastball. During his freshman campaign, Brown made 20 appearances – including two starts – and struck out 41 batters in 37.1 innings while walking 11.

While the door may potentially be left open for him to start in the big leagues, he’s been far more valuable in the closer role. Mechanically, he looks sound with a high leg kick and releasing from the 3/4 arm slot. He’s been able to repeat that delivery, which has contributed to his success.

Padres Draft: Three batters to target in third round. dark. Next

Brown closely profiles Diamondbacks relief pitcher, Archie Bradley, who transitioned into the closer role for the team last year with Brown displaying a bit more command.

Bradley 2019: 3.52 ERA, 8.5 H/9, 0.6 HR/9, 4.6 BB/9, 11.0 K/9

Brown 2018-2019: 3.86 ERA, 8.0 H/9, 0.4 HR/9, 2.1 BB/9, 10.9 K/9