By David Saltzer and Rick Dykhuizen
For many fans, the road to the Major Leagues seems pretty straight forward. Players play in high school, maybe college, get drafted and work their way up the organization. Although that sounds good on paper, there’s a lot more to it than that.
Jeremy Rhoades is a prime example of how the path might take a few twists and turns. Drafted in the 4th round out of Illinois State, Rhoades saw time in both the rotation and the bullpen. So the first question for this big righty (he’s 6’4” and 225 lbs) is what will be his future role as a pitcher.
Right now, the Angels are having him work both as a starter and as a reliever. There’s a good chance, though, that he will move to the pen long-term. He has a low 90s fastball that he can crank up to the mid-90s in short bursts. He has a true wipeout slider that shows good tilt. In 117.2 college innings, he did not give up a single homerun and sported a 139:35 K:BB ratio. So far at Orem, he’s continuing to put hitters away, generating a 12.27 K/9.0 IP ratio. If he can master his changeup, he may stay in the rotation. If not, he has a solid future in the pen.
In our interview, Rhoades talks about making the transition from college ball to professional ball. He tells us how the Owlz have come together as a team (which has helped them become the 1st half league champions), and how being a Business Administration major helps him on the mound.
Please click here to watch our interview with Jeremy Rhoades.