I had a great opportunity to watch Giant’s prospect Kevin Pucetas in action yesterday afternoon in Fresno. I’ve got friends with seats 8 rows behind the plate, and they gave me their tickets. So here is what I saw:
Pucetas is aggressive. He goes right after everyone. In six innings, he threw 88 pitches and 55 were strikes. I counted 15 first pitch strikes on 25 hitters. His velocity is only average. Occasionally he’ll hit 93 on the gun, but mostly he’s around 89-90. He works fast, which I like. I hate a guy who acts like he’s afraid to throw the ball. Pucetas tries to work inside. It seemed to me that he was up in the zone more than he’d like. I’d like to see more of a difference in speed between his fastball and off-speed stuff. The difference looks to be about 8-10 mph; not enough to really fool anybody. He’s a little slow to the plate. The opponents were running every chance they got. I’m not sure how much of that is due to Pucetas, and how much to Posey. Buster is not going to win any gold gloves behind the plate any time soon. His skills are still pretty raw. But back to Pucetas; he allowed six hits and three walks, striking out two. One earned run. That makes back-to-back decent outings, which is a relief after he finished last season poorly. I’ll be at Friday’s game to watch his next outing.
The guy who impressed me the most yesterday was Denny Bautista. He’s 27, so not much of a prospect. But what an arm. He hits 95-98 consistently, and it was hard for the Triple-A guys to catch up to it. His off-speed was about 82, and that made some hitters look foolish. It didn’t look like his pitches had much movement, so that may be why he gets hit at the Major League level.