Simeon Woods-Richardson is a 17-year-old prep right-handed pitcher from Houston. He’s one of the youngest players in the 2018 MLB Draft class and will likely hear his name called in the first three rounds of the draft, which begins June 4.
His senior season ended about three weeks ago, and he’s been anxiously waiting for the draft. He hasn’t participated in any predraft workouts for major league teams, he said.
“It’s a little nerve-racking,” he said. “I have down time now, and that’s all I think about.
“At the same time, I’m getting an opportunity that could be my future and is a goal of mine. Just seeing the day come up is pretty exciting but nerve-racking.”
Woods-Richardson had a strong spring, registering double-digit strikeout performances on a regular basis in large part because of his ability to attack the strike zone with his four-pitch mix.
An aggressive pitcher who prefers to work quickly, Woods-Richardson throws a fastball – four-seam and two-seam – changeup, cutter and a sharp 12-to-6 curveball.
After his fastball consistently sat in the mid-70s as a freshman in 2014, Woods-Richardson increased his velocity each year to the point where it was sitting in the mid-90s this spring.
A 6-foot-4, 210-pound righty, Woods-Richardson said a growth spurt his sophomore year where he grew six inches and added about 40 pounds is part of the reason for his fastball velocity increasing.
“That growth spurt happened and all the work I put in made me the baseball player I am today,” he said. “I progressively went up, stayed humble and put my head down and kept working hard. God blessed me with my right arm and it just kept getting better and better.”
MLB.com wrote that Woods-Richardson’s fastball velocity was consistently sitting at 89-92 mph this spring. But he quickly dismissed that report.
“That was only one game and it was a two-inning start,” Woods-Richardson said. “Every game, I averaged 92-94 mph and topped out at 97.”
Committed to Texas as a two-way player, Woods-Richardson said he’s stayed in contact with the coaches throughout the process and talked to head coach David Pierce over the phone “a few days ago.”
Eager for the draft to arrive, Woods-Richardson hopes to hear his name called in the early portion of the second round, he said.
“When that phone call happens, it’ll be the happiest day of my life,” he said. “It’s a waiting game at this point. See how the cards play out, and whatever I do, I go from there.
“But my decision will be made on draft day. With what scouts are projecting me as, I’m just waiting to see. If all the numbers and everything is right, that’s what I’m going to do with my life. But if something is just off, but then I don’t have a problem going to the University of Texas.”
Read more on Simeon Woods-Richardson here: