2018 MLB Draft to the Show: Then & Now Kris Bubic

David Seifert
Director of College Scouting

Just a little over one month into the 2020 MLB Season and we’ve already seen 13 debuts by 2018 MLB Draft selections, plus another prospect who went undrafted, but was signed as a free agent after the draft. Today, we take a look at the amateur report of one of those who has made it to The Show. Now taking the mound, our No. 57 ranked prospect from the 2018 PBR Draft Board Kris Bubic.

To check out our Then & Now series from this past spring featuring 2020 draft prospects, please see Draft HQ/Then & Now.

Kris Bubic, LHP, Kansas City Royals
As a junior lefty from Stanford in 2018, Bubic was seen as a polished, low risk pick. He was selected 40th overall and pitched 38 innings for Idaho Falls during the short-season Pioneer League. With a devastating changeup and low-90s fastball, Bubic led all of minor league baseball in 2019 with 185 strikeouts during his first full season. He was promoted to the Major Leagues on August 1 and became just the sixth starting pitcher in the past 13 years to make his MLB debut without ever pitching above Class A. He also joined Brady Singer, who we highlighted earlier this week in our Then & Now series, in the Royals rotation. Bubic then got his first Big League punchout against Yasmani Grandal of the Chicago White Sox on an elevated, 95 mph fastball. Through six starts this season he has pitched 28 innings, striking out 27 in the process.

MLB.com Debut Video & Boxscore

THEN 2018 as a College Junior: “Durable built, three-pitch lefty. Throws from a high three-quarters slot with a deep, plunging arm action on the backside. Overcomes his less than ideal arm action to consistently throw strikes to both sides of the plate. Lands on-line with a soft mid-foot plant, showing very good balance throughout his delivery. Uses his lower half well and has good extension out front. Shoulder tilt, a short pause at balance point and his arm action all add deception to his delivery. Fastball ranged from 90-93 mph early in the game, falling to 88-91 during the later innings of his five and one-third inning, 108 pitch outing. Threw his above average changeup with fastball arm speed early and often to both left-handed and right-handed hitters at 77-81 mph. Routinely doubled and tripled up with the pitch. Generated some swing/miss. Curveball showed average early, ranging from 75-79 mph with good shape and average depth. Lost some effectiveness and velocity, falling to 71-74 during the last two innings. Occasionally his arm action didn’t allow him to get on top of the ball, but overall the pitch was much improved from what I saw last summer in the Cape Cod All-Star game. The addition of this pitch to his arsenal has enabled him to improve his performance, allowing less hits (6.2/per 9 IP) and less walks (2.85/9) with more strikeouts (9.73/9) compared to last spring. As a college lefty who posts every weekend and performs to the level of his stuff, he has a high floor and is a lower risk pick. Profiling as a back end starter, look for Bubic to be drafted on Day 1.”

FULL DRAFT REPORT from April 30, 2018

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