2015 Draft: Mike Nikorak

Cashman: "I don’t see us making a major acquisition for a pitcher"
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Mike Nikorak | RHP

Nikorak, 18, went from interesting draft prospect to elite draft prospect on the showcase circuit last summer, when he overwhelmed top high school competition and wowed scouts. At Stroudsburg High School (Pennsylvania) this spring, Nikorak pitched to a 1.82 ERA with a 50/21 K/BB in 29.2 innings. His older brother Steve pitched at Temple and in the White Sox system briefly. Nikorak is committed to Alabama.

Scouting Report
The knock on Nikorak last year was his slight build, but he hit the weight room hard last offseason and now stands a sturdy 6-foot-5 and 205 pounds. His fastball is one of the best in the draft class, sitting 92-94 mph with movement and touching 97 mph fairly regularly. Nikorak did a better job of maintaining his velocity deep into games this spring thanks to the added muscle. His hard curveball is a hammer and a true out pitch on his best days, but he’s still working to be consistent with it. Like many high schoolers, his changeup is very much a work in progress. Nikorak has an easy delivery and the ball jumps out of his hand, and his control is better than his walk total indicates, but he does still need to improve his command, which is not uncommon for pitchers from cold weather states.

Nikorak was ranked as the 12th, 15th, and 16th best prospect in the draft class by Keith Law (subs. req’d), MLB.com, and Baseball America in their latest rankings, respectively. Both Law and Baseball America said the Yankees have interest in the right-hander in recent mock drafts. Nikorak checks all the boxes for a high school pitcher — he has size, a great fastball, and a potentially great breaking ball — which is why there was talk of him being a top five pick earlier this spring. The Yankees pick 16th and 30th this year, but it’ll have to be 16th or bust for Nikorak. He might not even be on the board for that pick. No way he gets to that 30th pick.

Cashman: "I don’t see us making a major acquisition for a pitcher"
TiqIQ: Legends Suites Bring About Memorable Experiences At Yankee Stadium
  • Austinmac

    Is it wrong to want all these players?

    • Dalek Jeter

      Seriously. Give me Nikorak, Whitley, and all of the West Coast arms Mike’s profiled in recent weeks please and thank you.

  • Deep Thoughts

    Signability alert?

    • Leftballer

      Not with Alabama.

  • Barzini

    He didn’t hit the glove once that entire video. But, that is a really nice, athletic delivery, with a jumpy fastball and a real good breaking pitch.

    • RetroRob

      It’s almost an anti-marketing video. No doubt released by the team that really wants to sign him to drive off the competition. (BTW I have to add that was a joke, since some people might take it seriously.)

  • Leftballer

    At 16 it’s either Him or Whitley.

    Choose wisely Oppenheimer.

    He got his ass handed to him in this video


  • sevrox

    Yankee starting lineup has close to a .280 avg with .350+ OBP against The King. Could happen…

    • RetroRob

      I do know Tex has hit him well both for average and power over the years. Don’t know about the rest.

  • RetroRob

    Great write-ups, although I’m trying not to get emotionally attached to any single player to avoid likely disappointment when that player’s name gets read before the Yankees pick. Whitley seems great, Nikorak too, Happ, etc. All should be good as long as I don’t hear a name like Dante Culver or Cito Bichette next Monday.

    • nycsportzfan

      What do you think of Phil Bickford?

    • Dalek Jeter

      With the 16th pick in the 2015 Amatauer player draft the Yankees select Culver Bichette the IV, SS, out of West Bumblefuck Junior College.

  • Franchise

    I wish you could trade picks like in other sports.

    • Nick

      Yankees would have traded away all their picks years ago