Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Dr B's 2014 Giants Top 50 Prospects: #42 Dan Slania

Note:  Ryan Jones was slotted here, but after I got into researching the post, I realized that he really belongs in the HM section due to repeating short season ball.  I just moved everybody else up one notch on the list.

Dan Slania, RHP.  6'5", 275 lbs.  DOB:  5/27/1992

College:  3-1, 1.21, 59.1 IP, 11 BB, 43 K, 13 Saves.
Short Season:  1-1, 3.95, 13.2 IP, 3 BB, 14 K, 3 Saves.
2012 Cape Cod League:  1.60, 33.2 IP, 4 BB, 48 K.

I was surprised that Slania lasted until the 5'th round of the 2013 draft as I was hoping he would fall to the Giants in the round 2.  He's a huge body, although he did not look quite that big on the scouting videos I saw.  Premier college reliever, mid 90's FB, power slider.  One scouting report had his change up as a plus pitch with good deception and fade.  Some think his 3 pitch mix might work as a starter, but most scouts would try to fast track him to the majors out of the bullpen.

I expect him to be the closer for San Jose in 2014.


  1. Big Dan - I'm looking for him in San Jose this year as well. He'll have competition fighting him from within, but I think he takes the closer spot by the horns. This is very timely, as I just found this video of him this morning. Maybe you've already seen it, but I completely missed it... Looks to be from the same instructional game that featured the Crick, Mella, and Chase Johnson footage, as well as a few others. Slania's fastball was mostly 92-93, as low as 90, high as 95. What surprised me was a big mid-70's curveball that he had tremendous control of. Impressive pitch!

    1. I haven't seen that video, but I read one scouting report that said his curveball was a better pitch than his slider. Seems like he has excellent command for a big dude who throws hard which is one reason I think he could move fast.

    2. I didn't know he had the curve. He hung it toward the end of the inning in that video, but he also dropped it in for strike 3 to a couple of hitters. 20 mph slower than his fastball, now that's a real weapon. I'm excited to see what he does this year. If he's in San Jose, that's going to be one seriously talented pitching staff, top to bottom.

  2. I thought it was interesting that Slania pitched 59.1 innings in 24 games. I think it would be cool if they fostered that durability in the minors and kept him as a potential multi-inning reliever.

    The other thing that is exciting is he already seems to limit walks. I think there's a good chance Slania will move fast.

    1. Good looking out there, Anon, I definitely agree. I really dig seeing relief prospects that show an ability to go above and beyond the single inning effort. And Lo! and Behold - check out this very interesting article about Slania that I dragged up with a simple google search:

      "Slania displayed one of the gutsiest pitching performances in school history on May 3, 2013, against USF yet it went for naught. The right-handed hurler, who allowed a two-out, game-tying two-run double in the top of the ninth inning that tied the score, 2-2, rebounded with 7.1 consecutive scoreless innings afterwards. Slania retired 21 of the last 23 USF batters he faced."

      Fascinating! Additional mentions of high leverage, multiple-inning efforts are also included in the article. Sounds very much like the type of strong-stuff, gutsy competitor that I'd take lots of in the G's bullpen.

      Also, here's a pretty sweet rundown scouting report on Slania, noting first and foremost, "Among the pure relief pitchers in this draft, Dan Slania is the best of the bunch." .... "However, due to being a relief pitcher, drafting teams know that there will be a learning curve if they want to put Slania back in the rotation."

      After reading all this, I'd have to say I'm very high Slania's profile (and his great baseball name!!), and would note that he's a very solid guy to be holding at #42 in this list. Deep System! Love it.

  3. Since draft day, I have been following Slania's progress. I too and in the court of public opinion; hoping they convert him to a long innings / potentially a starter. Like the mix he as already. That is a body built to be a horse.
    Richard in Winnipeg

  4. Is Slania the guy the draft-a-reliever strategy breaks through on? His scouting report pre-draft was all about advanced pitches, including his breaking balls plural. If the Giants get his fastball back to the velocity he flashed at the cape they could have a monster. I like Big Dan!

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