Getting to know your prospects: Shawn Morimando
Taking a look at one of the Indians’ prospects…
Name: Shawn Morimando
Position: Left-handed starting pitcher
Current team: High-A Carolina Mudcats
Facts & Info: Morimando was selected in the 19th round of the 2011 Draft out of Ocean Lakes High School (VA). He had a commitment to play baseball and attend East Carolina University before signing with the Indians for $350,000. Last season he was 2nd in batting average against (.231) in the Carolina League.
The Stuff: He saw a jump in his velocity last season as it sat at 89-92 MPH and touched 94 MPH. His fastball has good sink to it and life in the zone. He has the ability to locate it to both sides of the plate. His slider is the best secondary offering in his arsenal because he gets swing-and-miss with it and it’s a tough pitch on lefties. His slurvy curveball has good sweeping action and continues to show improvement with the potential to be a solid average pitch. He also has a solid average feel for a firm changeup.
The Delivery: He has a good delivery with clean, easy arm action and throws from a three-quarter arm slot. He is an extremely athletic pitcher who is not very big but deceivingly strong with wide shoulders and a good frame that leave some projection left in him with both his body and stuff.
The Intangibles: He just has a great feel for pitching and knows what he is trying to do on the mound. He is special when he is fearless throwing the ball inside to hitters as it really opens up the outer half of the plate for him. He shows some trust in his stuff and is not scared to go inside and attack hitters, and just has a very mature approach for his age.
The Focus: When he exhibits command, he is very tough, so he is working on being consistent with all of his pitches and to throw good strikes around the plate. A lot of that stems from him gaining more confidence in his fastball by trusting it more and being more aggressive with it on the plate and pitching inside with it to right-handers.
The Future: The Indians are desperate for quality left-handed pitching, be it in the starting rotation or the bullpen, and Morimando has rapidly shot up the ranks as a legit lefty pitching prospect for them. Given his age, level and success he has had to date, the Indians have been very impressed, though now comes the hard part as now that he has established himself in the upper levels of the system he needs to start showing consistent results, improvement with his stuff, and, most importantly, some considerable strides with his fastball command.