Braydon Nelson
Braydon Nelson
Braydon Nelson

CLASS OF 2017

RHP
1B

Braydon
Nelson

St. Bonaventure
St Ignatius High School (HS) • OH
6-4 • 210LBS • S/R

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2017 National

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2017 State

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6/6/16
6-foot-4, 210-pound strong, projectable frame. Made a significant jump in velocity since the last time we saw him. Does a nice job of creating momentum to home plate with his lower half. Does a nice job of hiding the ball during his delivery making his 82-86 mph fastball get on hitters quickly. Throws a power curveball that has late, sharp action at 75-79 mph. Is able to maintain fastball armspeed on his 77-80 mph changeup.

7/15/15
6-foot-3, 175-pound projectable frame. On the mound the right hander does a good job staying over his back leg. Uses a shoulder tilt with a long arm swing and very tough to pick up. Throws from a high-3/4 slot with fastball sitting 79-82 mph. Shows two kinds of breaking balls Curveball has a bigger break at 68-69 mph and a slider with tighter spin and some swing and miss at 71-72 mph.

7/8/15
Tall 6-foot-3, 175-pound projectable body frame. From first base he uses good footwork around the bag and fields the ball with his hands out in front of his body. He throws from an over the top slot and reached a top velocity of 73 mph across the infield. On the mound he uses regular effort to his delivery. He has a shoulder tilt and lands in a straight line at foot strike, landing with his momentum carrying toward home plate. He throws using average arm speed, coming from a ¾ slot. His fastball was between 79-83 mph. His curveball showed gradual break with 11/5 tilt at 66-68 mph. He threw a changeup using fastball arm speed that had some tailing movement at 70-71 mph.  

6/23/19: Nelson has enjoyed a strong start to the 2019 Northwoods season (3-0, 2.35 ERA/1.14 WHIP with 25 strikeouts in 30.2 IP), while averaging six innings per start (on par with his 72 innings of work in 12 starts this spring). The rangy righty is all arms and legs during his motion, utilizing a long and deep arm circle and a straight-legged landing with visible recoil. His low-three-quarters slot fits well with his three-pitch mix (fastball, changeup and slider), but each of his offerings might benefit from the improved angle a spin that could come with a slightly higher release. In this most recent look, Nelson sat 89-to-92 mph with his fastball from the wind-up while regularly dipping down to the 87-to-90 mph range from the stretch. His slider and changeup each played in the 79-to-81 mph velo band and were fringy offerings that played half a grade higher due to the righty’s ability to match arm slot and arm speed with his heater. Right now, Nelson looks the part of a potential Day 3 target, though the delivery will likely scare off some clubs. Between the spring and the summer he’s also within striking distance of a SO/BB rate that could land him on some analytics lists. (Faleris)

6/10/18: Nelson heads into the summer after completing a strong freshman season for St. Bonaventure in a competitive Atlantic-10 Conference. In total, he made 17 appearances with 10 starts and accumulated a 4.45 ERA in 58.2 IP. So far this Summer he’s been used strictly in relief and has only allowed 1 ER across five appearances. At 6’4/210 pounds, he has a great pitching frame to add more weight and should see his body control improve as he gets stronger. His athleticism and explosiveness might be below average, but he makes up for it by generating good leverage from his big lower half and having a smooth finish to his delivery. Nelson’s arm action is a bit unconventional but it’s repeatable for him and causes the ball to get on the hitter quicker than anticipated. After he breaks his hands, he essentially shows the ball to 2nd base and pushes it straight back, as opposed to having any backswing or arm path behind him. He maintains some elbow bend on his takeaway and once he lands he does a good job of making his arm more compact as he delivers the pitch. The ball comes out from a ¾ release point and he accelerates his arm rather effortlessly. You can see more looseness in the last half of his delivery than you initially do early on. Nelson showed a three-pitch arsenal for the one inning appearance I saw. He has a FB that works 86-89 mph, a low 80’s cutter and a tight slider that he mixed in at 73-75 mph. He flashes average control of all three without having exceptional command of any particular pitch. When he started his FB to the middle, there was better life and some arm-side run as he stayed behind the pitch longer. The cutter had problems staying in the zone and missed low more often than not. You could see him really working around the baseball to create the movement and it lacked the same depth/angle of his FB. The slider has the chance to develop into a true out-pitch for Nelson. He tunnels it very effectively with his FB and there’s no discernable hump to the pitch out of his hand. The combination of depth in the zone and horizontal break was really tough on hitters. If he can add some velocity or more command to his FB, Nelson should turn himself into a quality prospect. It will also be interesting to see what role he ends up in. While he has the size and repertoire to be a starter, he might see his pure stuff play up in shorter stints as a reliever. (Dan Jurik)

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