Robby Snelling develops into a top prospect

Robby Snelling isn’t a stranger to the spotlight. The two-sport star from McQueen (Nev.) High School was a high-profile football and baseball recruit and received interest from some of the premier college programs during his high school career.

Over the last year, the attention has shifted from college coaches to professional baseball scouts. The left-handed pitcher set a Nevada record for strikeouts in a seven-inning game with 20 strikeouts and posted a state large-class record with 145 strikeouts in 62 1/3 innings this season.

His success and development have caused him to rise up MLB draft boards. Scouts project Snelling as a potential first-round pick with the chance to be one of the first prep pitchers selected in July’s draft.

“We just really took the season personally,” Snelling said. “Even though rankings aren’t a big deal, I wasn’t ranked where I am now at the beginning of the year. We knew I was capable of doing what I did this year. I just hadn’t gotten the chance to do it in front of the people I did this year.”

Snelling is a 6-foot-3, 205-pound left-handed pitcher that throws a fastball, curveball and changeup from a three-quarters arm slot. He is a physical athlete with an aggressive mindset who attacks the strike zone.

He relies heavily on his fastball, curveball combination. His fastball is a quality offering that touches 97 mph. He uses his fastball to attack hitters, especially early in the count.

He has two variations of his curveball. Snelling’s curveball is an above-average offering with good depth and serves as his put-away pitch. Typically, early in counts, Snelling will throw a proper curveball. But when he’s ahead and looking for a swing and miss, he will manipulate his curveball, so it’s a harder breaking pitch, he said.

Besides his quality fastball, curveball mix, Snelling’s mindset on the mound sets him apart from other pitchers. He has a calm demeanor and doesn’t get rattled when something doesn’t go his way. He credits his mentality to his experience playing quarterback and middle linebacker for his high school football team.

“My mentality going into games is my biggest strength,” Snelling said. “The way I can control the game and not let many things get into my head. If something bad happens, I have really good body language.”

Snelling has the pitch mix, intangibles and potential to be a starting pitcher in the professional ranks. It is vital for Snelling to develop his changeup. He rarely used his changeup at the high school level. But, when scouts saw it, they felt it had the potential to be a quality pitch.

In the offseason, he wants to throw his changeup regularly to develop confidence in the pitch.

“I want to work a lot on my changeup in the offseason and make sure I get that arm side run and depth I want,” Snelling said.

Besides his status as a draft prospect, Snelling also is a highly-ranked college commit. He initially committed to Stanford University for baseball as a freshman. But he decommitted after he started receiving interest in football.

Snelling, a star high school quarterback and linebacker, was a four-star middle linebacker, according to recruiting services. He received offers to be a two-sport athlete in college. He visited the University of Arizona and the University of Oregon due to their willingness to let him play both sports.

Snelling likely would have committed to Arizona to play both sports. But then-Arizona baseball coach Jay Johnson accepted the same position at Louisiana State University last offseason. Snelling then committed to LSU to only play baseball last July.

He has talked with LSU football coach Brian Kelly, who recruited him to Notre Dame, but Snelling plans on just playing baseball if he makes it to campus.

“It came down to what sport I love more,” Snelling said. “Baseball brings the most joy to me, even with how I excelled at both sports. It became clear to me that football was the sport to give up, and I was happy playing baseball.”

Read more in-depth stories on top 2022 MLB draft prospects at Baseball Prospect Journal.

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Video of Robby Snelling via The Prospect Pipeline.

Dan Zielinski III has covered the MLB draft for seven years. He has interviewed 356 of the top draft prospects in that period, including four No. 1 overall picks. Multiple publications, including Baseball America, USA Today, and The Arizona Republic, have quoted his work, while he has appeared on radio stations as a “MLB draft expert.” Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski III is the creator of the Baseball Prospect Journal and has covered the MLB draft since 2015. His draft work originally appeared on, a sports website he started in December 2011. He also covered the Milwaukee Brewers as a member of the credentialed media for four years. Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

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