Vanderbilt University’s Drake Fellows brings big-game ability to Padres

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The Vanderbilt Hustle

Right-handed pitcher Drake Fellows could be a fast mover within the San Diego Padres system.

The San Diego Padres have several players who could take their game into a whole new level in 2020.

One pitcher to keep a watchful eye on is Drake Fellows. The Padres selected the pitcher in the sixth-round in 2019 out of the University of Vanderbilt. The 6-foot-5 hurler won a National Championship with the Commodores and brings a ton of big-game experience to the Padres.

The 21-year-old will be making his professional debut in 2020. The length of his successful season in Vanderbilt limited his ability to get into action this past summer for the Padres. Fellows threw a total of 104 innings in 2019 and certainly needed a break from the mound. The Padres wisely pumped the breaks with their young pitcher.

Fellows is considered a power pitcher with a lethal fastball/slider combination.

The native of Illinois has a fastball that sits at 91-93 mph, typically with an excellent sink to it. The right-hander is capable of getting his velocity up into the mid-90s when needed. He has shown the ability throughout his career to find another gear when in trouble. The fastball is not an issue for this pitcher as he has a very lively arm with proper arm motion.

The slider is an improving weapon for this hurler as he gets swings and misses on the pitch reasonably easy. It sits in the low to mid-80’s and has excellent late life to it. He also has a changeup that shows plus ability at times. The pitch can get too firm and flatten out on the pitcher if he overthrows the selection, but there is potential with the pitch. His main issue with his offspeed is getting left-handers out effectively. If Fellows can solidify the change and use it as a weapon against lefties, he could take that proverbial next step with his production.

Command and his mechanics are the main concern with this tall pitcher presently. Walks have been an issue throughout his career as he can lose focus from time to time on the mound. The Padres will undoubtedly work with the pitcher on becoming more compact with his delivery. If they can succeed in simplifying his delivery, the pitcher could be a fast-riser in the system. He must throw strikes to have a chance to advance against professional hitters.

Fellows is very excited to start his career with the Padres. The pitcher is prepared and committed to excel as a professional baseball player. Playing the game is something he always wanted to do growing up.  “The Padres made a dream come true today,” Fellows said after he was selected this past June. The 2020 season could very well be a dream year for the pitcher.

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