The Phillies took a flyer on Jones’ size and arm strength in the 2017 Draft’s 18th round. He’s 6’5’’ and a well built 225 pounds, with an imposing presence on the mound that looks the part. Pitching exclusively from the stretch, his arm swing is deep out of the glove, though he’s still able to create significant downhill plane from his high 3/4’s arm slot.
The fastball sits 91-to-93 mph, touching as high as 94 mph upon occasional in my backfield looks this spring. It features average movement, though he struggles to command it within the zone at this point. That said, Jones has shown enthusing delivery adjustments that are improving his general feel for the strike zone—a more controlled, upright delivery the catalyst for this positive development. He flashes intriguing off-speed pitches, though their shape and action are both inconsistent. A curveball at 76-to-78 mph is his main breaking ball, and at best it will show average depth and sharpness. He shows his low-80’s slider more often to lefties, though it’s less dynamic than his curveball. Jones will also show a changeup at 85-to-86 mph that flashes occasional splitter-like dive when he maintains his arm speed.
Ticketed for Class A Lakewood to start 2018, the physical southpaw could put himself on the fast track with a strong performance this season. If he can put the pieces together, the ceiling is that of a situational reliever who can combat same-side hitters.