2/20/12

Players I Really Want the Mets to Draft: - BHP Ryan Perez

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By Stephen Guilbert

Ryan Perez – BHP - Elgin Westminster Christian High School (IL)

Yes, you read that correctly. BHP stands for “both-handed pitcher” (also known as “double barrel” pitching) and Ryan Perez is a true ambidextrous pitcher.

Unlike Pat Venditte of the Yankees, who throws much harder with his right arm and significantly slower with his left, Perez can hit 90 MPH with both his left and his right arms. His impressive repertoire hardly stops there, either; he also throws a change, curve and cutter from both sides and shows advanced control for a high-school pitcher. He also can throw side-armed from both arms, although he rarely does it.

According to an article for CBS, Perez will start games with his left hand and change to his right later in games because he feels his right arm is more dominant and he likes to close down games right-handed. However, when the lineup calls for it, he will sometimes face one batter righty and the next lefty and so forth. While he is not allowed to change arms in the middle of at bats, he can and does from batter to batter and certainly from inning to inning.

Perez has found quite a bit of success with his crafty approach and impressive arsenal as well. Perez’s stats from last year included a 9-1 record, a 1.56 ERA and 131 Ks in 63 innings while sharing time at third and short (he throws right-handed while in the field). I know this isn’t Sun Belt competition, but those numbers are ridiculous.

While this Chicago local has dreams of playing for the White Sox, I am rooting for the Mets to look at him seriously sometime after day one. Even if this kid were not ambidextrous (which I think would undoubtedly put fans in seats at each stop all the way to Flushing), I would still want to draft him for his pitch repertoire, work ethic and dedication to the craft. His father, who started him throwing with both arms at a young age, has worked him hard. “He (my dad) would tell me I have to work out twice as long. I would take a bucket of balls left-handed fielding then right-handed. Then I would do a bucket of fly balls left and right handed. After that I would still have to pitch and hit,” Perez said.

Bottom line: This is a hard-working, impressive, dominant, and intriguing arm (well, arms, I should say) who would at worst be a spectacle while in the minor leagues and at best be the first true ambidextrous pitcher in the majors. The great thing is - he has an amazing ceiling as well. I honestly believe Ryan Perez could be an ambidextrous major league starter and I would love to have him do it as a New York Met. He has the potential and work ethic to make it to the bigs and I really hope the Mets grab him if they have the chance. Let’s get it done, Sandy.

Next up on this series of posts will feature a slugging high school catcher from right here at home in New York City. Stay tuned.

Links:
Youtube of Mr. Perez throwing for the Rays minor league pitching coordinator: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_kBABPXYCU
Interview with Ryan Perez (He says his father had him throwing left-handed at three years old with rocks on a pond and went from there): http://switchpitching.blogspot.com/2012/02/ryan-perez-espn-interview.html

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