Conda-Bogan is easy to root for, having signed with Kansas City from an independent league team after not coming to terms with Toronto in the 32nd round of the 2017 Draft. He put up excellent numbers out of the bullpen at Low-A Lexington, and the Royals swapped him for Brian Goodwin in a one-for-one deal. I saw him before the trade in May, then caught Conda-Bogan’s first appearance as a Nationals prospect with High-A Potomac.
He’s a thick-framed 6’3’’ and 230 pounds, and while he has a power pitcher’s build; Condra-Bogan will need to keep the body in check as he ages. There’s limited deception in his delivery, as he pitches solely from the stretch with a deliberate operation that hitters can time up. Most of Condra-Bogan’s prospect value is tied up in his fastball velocity, which touches the 96-to-97 mph range at best and sits in the mid-90s. It flashes run action, especially down in the zone, but there isn’t much command and he relies on throwing hard to get away with his spots. A mid-80s slider is the primary off-speed, showing tight spin and more vertical depth than lateral movement. It’s presently a fringy pitch that might get to average, but I didn’t feel as though the slider is likely to miss bats at higher levels. Condra-Bogan mixes a change with good velocity separation at 80-to-84 mph, but he slows his arm and floats the pitch, negating some of the effect.
The best-case scenario is a FV 45 middle reliever who pairs an above-average fastball with enough off-speed and control to hang around the big leagues. Condra-Bogan is a limited athlete whose velocity wavers greatly, sometimes down as low as the 90-to-92 range when he’s tired. There’s plenty of room to fall short of a regular ML bullpen ceiling—if the fastball backs up, he lacks a separator otherwise and projects closer to a 4A type who gets cups of coffee.