Future Watch: James Kaprielian Rookie Baseball Cards, Yankees – James Kaprielian was a first round selection in the 2015 MLB Draft as the 16th overall pick by the New York Yankees. The Yankees didn’t want to wait for the youngster so they got him to forego his final year at UCLA to start his career right away.
This highly touted right-hander received a lot of high grades from outlets like ESPN, Fangraphs and more. All of them agreed he is going to be a solid major league pitcher down the road.
Originally drafted by the Mariners, this California native didn’t sign with them. Instead he pitched in college. He dominated to the tune of a 33-3 record,.096 earned run average and 250 strikeouts. He started out as a reliever but in his sophomore year he became a starter and the rest was history. In May of 2015 he combined with pitcher David Berg for the first no-hitter in UCLA history.
At 6′-4″, 200lbs he has the right frame to become a dominant pitcher. Playing in the Gulf League and later for Staten Island in the Penn League his first stint with the Yankees was decent. In 11 innings he struck out 14. He pitched in 5 games, not all as a starter but his last appearance was a nine inning, 12-strikeout, 2 earned run gem. He actually got the loss in that effort but he can build on that outing for sure.
Here is a look at some highlights from the Staten short season:
According to his MLB.com draft profile:
Kaprielian was one of six first-round picks on the U.S. collegiate national team’s pitching staff in 2014, and while he might have the lowest ceiling of that group, he also might be the safest bet among them to become a No. 3 starters in the big leagues. He has tremendous feel for pitching, advanced control and command for his age and a durable frame. ETA 2017
Collectors better get on it. He’s going to be in the bigs very soon.