With the 197th overall pick in the 2019 MLB Draft, the Red Sox selected Chris Murphy, pitcher for the University of San Diego Toreros.
The California native was the fourth college ball player that Boston chose, presumably in an attempt to save money for their sole high school prospect, Matthew Lugo. Entering the draft, Murphy was predicted by Baseball America to land the 155th spot, meaning this pickup was a steal for the Fenway Faithful.
Though the southpaw is on the smaller side, 6″1″ 175 pounds, his numbers tell the story.Freshman and sophomore year saw his ERA hang around the 4.20 mark. Then junior year rolled around and he gathered 87 strikeouts, while lowering his ERA to 3.50 over 64 innings of work. It caught the attention of scouts to the delight of USD head coach Rich Hill.
“He’s got such a great arm and his best years are definitely ahead of him,” Hill said. “Once he gets command of the strike zone a little better, gets a little bit more mature, a little stronger, that’s going to come. I think he’s a big league pitcher. I don’t know if that’s as a starter or in the bullpen, but he will be on a mound in a big league stadium someday.”
The only glaring issue at the moment is Murphy’s lack of command. It’s a frustrating matter for fans and managers alike. For that reason, Murphy is being compared to Eduardo Rodriguez. In hindsight, that’s not a bad resemblance to have on a resume.
Here’s to hoping it will become easier to get a read on his progress as time passes.