Sergey was recently signed to a minor league contract on July 1 by Oakland after spending the last three-and-a-half seasons pitching through various teams in the independent leagues. Before coming to Stockton, Sergey was a member of the Laredo Lemurs in the American Association Independent League, where he went 4-0 in seven Starts, striking out 56 over 44 innings and giving up only four runs.
Since joining Stockton, Sergey has continued to get people out by missing bats (two starts, 11 IP, 14 Ks, two walks). During his second start for Stockton, at San Jose on July 10, Sergey went six innings allowing four base runners and striking out eight.
Sergey’s got a medium athletic build and is lanky with long arms. The arm comes full circle and out of a high 3/4’s release point, with a delivery that has a pause over the rubber before dropping his hands and driving towards the plate. He is definitely a max-effort thrower and the delivery is very slow and methodical. His slow delivery was taken advantage of, as he gave up four stolen bases in the first two innings while pitching around dangerous situations. After those first two innings, though, Sergey was dealing, as he got nine straight outs before giving up a solo home run to lead off his final inning. During that run of outs, he also recorded five strikeouts.
He works with a fringy fastball sitting 89-to-90 mph (T92) that was generally straight, but can get some added life up in the zone. During my look, Sergey was fastball dominant and utilized the pitch all over the plate, commanding it best to the glove side while going up the ladder for strikeouts. There were times where it looked like the fastball snuck up on some hitters, but I attribute this to a Sunday day game with shadows moving between the mound and the hitters.
Sergey threw two off-speed pitches, a below-average slider and a fringy changeup. The changeup (81-to-84 mph, T86) was straight, having a little sink while coming out looking like a fastball. He did a good job of picking his spots for this pitch, throwing it in a few Fastball counts and getting hitters to swing off their front foot. The slider (79-to-83 mph, T84) has hard lateral spin with some cut to the glove side. The pitch was mainly used off the plate to righties, looking to get them to chase out of the zone.
Overall Sergey showed fringy command, but was able to tease the edges of the zone just enough so that hitters would attempt at it but ended up missing or making weak contact for easy fly balls outs (17 of 18 outs were Ks or fly balls).
Seeing as Sergey is almost 27 years old and pitching for his first time at the High A level, and given the limited velocity separation between his pitches, the best I could see him project is to that of an up-down, AAAA player. The most likely outcome is that he is just an organizational arm.