Top 41: #24 RHP Luis Cessa and #25 RHP Robert Gsellman

Both of these pitchers have upsides as guys who can pitch at the back of a big league rotation and both showed me that they could get outs in a-ball. They are both above 6’3″ and are solidly built (again, adding to the case that they can be rotation pieces down the road). On the other hand, they have incomplete arsenals at the moment, and their raw statistics could overstate their prospect profile.

 

#24 RHP Luis Cessa

Cessa Delivery (Devyatkin)Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Height/Weight: 6’3”/190
Acquired: NDFA
Born: April 25, 1992 (Cordoba, Veracruz, MX)

 2013 Rank: 42 Stats 
Why Ranked Here: Cessa has size, a major league fastball, some feel for his off-speed pitches, and success at a-ball to recommend him as a future big league starter if everything works out. Scouts were willing to say he could be a #4 starter.

The converted infielder stands 6’3”. He’s not lean and he’s not bulky – he’s in the middle with a little bit of meat on his bones. His delivery works, and he repeats well. He rarely walked a batter.

Cessa added a tick of fastball velocity from 2012 to 2013 and by June was sitting 92-93, in outings in which his velocity spanned 91-95 mph. His slider is slurvy at times, but it has a chance to be average. His changeup comes out of his hand well, and it too has a chance to be an average pitch.

Cessa had a tendency to work up in the zone with his fastball. In the expansive Historic Grayson Stadium this was no problem; a-ball hitters were not strong enough to make him pay regularly. However, on the road, this became a bigger issue. This ranking hedges against the idea that he could be a Grayson Stadium pitching mirage.

ERA BB% HR% Opp ISO
Home 2.25 2.5% 1% .071
Road 4.10 4.7% 3.1 .170

2013:  Cessa pitched the bulk of the 2013 season as a 21-year-old in the SAL where he was durable and effective. In fact, he pitched so much, and so well early in the year, that the Mets had to put him on the phantom disabled list in the second half to keep his work load down to pitch in the SAL playoffs.

I was a little disappointed by his work in the playoffs too. When Gabriel Ynoa and Steven Matz were electric, Cessa’s stuff seemed flatter by comparison. Perhaps he was tired at the end of the long year, but the contrast sticks out to me.

Dr. Pangloss Says: #4 starter
Debbie Downer Says: Tops out at AA with no MLB out pitch
Projected 2014 Start:  Advanced-A St. Lucie
MLB Arrival: 2016

 

[sny-table rowheader=true columnheader=true]

;ERA;G/GS;IP;H;R;ER;HR;BB;SO;HBP;WP;

2012 NYP;2.49;13/13;72.33;64;21;20;4;13;44;2;0;

2013 SAL;3.12;21/21;130;136;53;45;11;19;124;0;4;

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[sny-table rowheader=true columnheader=true]

;BB/9;SO/9;SO/BB;HR/9;H/9;R/9;BB%;SO%;HR%;TBF;

2012 NYP;1.6;5.5;3.4;0.5;8.0;2.6;4.6;15.4;1.4;285;

2013 SAL;1.3;8.6;6.5;0.8;9.4;3.7;3.5;23.1;2.0;537;

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#25 – RHP Rob Gsellman

Bats/Throws:  Right/Right
Height/Weight: 6’4”/220 lbs
Acquired:  13th rd ’11 (Westchester HS)
Born: 7/18/93
2013 Rank:  NR Stats 
Why Ranked Here: Gsellman is a big guy with the potential to have an average MLB fastball, which plays up because he throws strikes, and land at the back of a big league rotation. He’s ahead of the kids behind him because he’s picked up some outs in a-ball.

I saw Gsellman three times in May and early June with the Gnats. He threw lots of strikes with his fastball that lived 89-92. His solid, 6’4” frame supports that kind of velocity easily.

 

At his best, he threw his fastball for a strike 67% of the time. He had good feel for his changeup, which he threw a lot – up to 25 times in a start and over 70% of the time for strikes. He threw fewer than five curves in each of the starts I saw. So the best I can say is that it exists.

I want to see more fastball velocity from Gsellman or a better hook to move him into the top-20 next year.
2013:  In his age 19/20 summer, Gsellman actually moved down the system from advanced-A through A-ball and then to the New York Penn League. He made two spot starts in St. Lucie for Hansel Robles, then moved down to Savannah, when the Gnats’ roster thinned out. He then dominated the New York-Penn League.

Gsellman was also responsible for one of the more poignant moments of the 2013 season. He threw for Savannah on Breast Cancer Awareness night in May. His own mother Trisha passed away from the disease in 2009.
Dr. Pangloss Says: Backend big league starter.
Debbie Downer Says: A righty without a breaking ball is an iffy profile, but he’s young and all.
Projected 2014 Start: Savannah, maybe on Opening Night.
MLB Arrival: 2017

[sny-table rowheader=true columnheader=true]

;ERA;G/GS;IP;H;R;ER;HR;BB;SO;HBP;WP;TBF

13 FSL;3.00;2/2;9;5;3;3;1;5;5;0;0;38

13 SAL;3.72;5/5;29;35;17;12;2;6;14;1;0;122

13 NYP;2.06;12/12;70;59;23;16;2;12;64;6;3;288

Total;2.58;17/17;108;99;43;31;5;23;83;7;3;448

[/sny-table]

 

 

[sny-table rowheader=true columnheader=true]

;BB/9;SO/9;SO/BB;HR/9;H/9;R/9;BB%;SO%;HR%;

13 FSL;5.0;5.0;1.0;1.0;5.0;3.0;13.2;13.2;2.6;

13 SAL;1.9;4.3;2.3;0.6;10.9;5.3;4.9;11.5;1.6;

13 NYP;1.5;8.2;5.3;0.3;7.6;3.0;4.2;22.2;0.7;

Total;1.9;6.9;3.6;0.4;8.3;3.6;5.1;18.5;1.1;

[/sny-table]

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