Jay Groome   Pitcher

       
 
Born: August 23, 1998
Birthplace: Toms River, NJ
Height: 6-6
Weight: 260
Bats: Left
Throws: Left
   
Drafted: 1st round, 2016 by BOS
How Acquired: Draft
College: (Chipola JC commit)
High School: Barnegat (NJ)

Photo © Kelly O'Connor
Jay Groome photos by Kelly O'Connor
Pronunciation: ---
First Pro Contract: July 15, 2016 (BOS)
Signing Scout: Ray Fagnant
Signing Bonus: $3,650,000
   
Pro Debut: August 22, 2016 (GCL)
MLB Debut: -
   
Twitter: @jaygroome55
Instagram: @jaygroome


Traded to San Diego for Eric Hosmer, Max Ferguson, Corey Rosier, and cash (August 2022)
 
 
 
 
 
     
  Scouting Report & Links      
         
  Physical Description: Very large pitcher's frame. Wide, mature upper body and filled-out lower half. Looks all of his listed height and weight. Below-average athlete. Height is imposing on the mound. Body will need maintenance and bears watching as he matures; has had problems maintaining his conditioning and conditioning seems to have backed up in 2022. How his body develops will depend on how much work he puts in off the field.

Mechanics: Throws from a three-quarters arm slot. Starts on the first base side from the wind-up. Medium-effort delivery. Utilizes a high leg lift and is upright and stiff. Arm action includes a stab behind. Hides the ball briefly when he brings it behind his back and then again behind his head as he comes forward. Delivery is inconsistent and has gotten stiffer as his athleticism and coordination have regressed. Has trouble getting his arm in sync with the rest of his delivery. Has a tendency to open up his front side early while his arm lags behind and comes through late. When his arm is out ahead, he will miss up to the glove side; when it drags behind, tends to miss arm-side.

Fastball: Sits 89-92 mph. Tops out at 94 mph. In the past, would come out at 92-94 mph and settle in after an inning or two at 90-92, but in 2022, velocity has been down and mostly pitched at 89-92. Prior to his Tommy John surgery, would sit 92-94 mph and could dial it up to the 94-96 mph range. Still needs to show the ability to hold velocity deeper into games. Even at diminished velocity, pitch showed swing-and-miss potential when commanded in the low minors, but that hasn’t translated since he reached Double-A. Has struggled with command and as a result given up a lot more contact against advanced hitters. Potential to develop into a fringe-average offering with refined command.

Curveball: 76-80 mph. 1-to-7 shape. At its best, shows depth and late finish. Feel comes and goes. When he has it working, can either throw in the zone or bury down and out of the zone to induce swinging strikes. At its best, pre-surgery, pitch showed plus potential, but feel and consistency have not returned. Now projects as an average-to-better offering.

Changeup: 79-82 mph. Throws with deceptive arm speed the majority of the time. Shows late drop. Has shown the ability to pull the string on it and serves as an effective pitch against righties, to whom he almost exclusively throws it. Has improved and now shows as much or more potential than curveball. Did not throw much in high school or in 2016. Began to incorporate it more in 2017 as a work-in-progress as he tried to develop feel. Since return from surgery, pitch has steadily improved and he has shown more feel for it. Potential average offering at best.

Slider: 85-87 mph. Short, horizontal movement. Became more comfortable with it during the 2021 season. Inconsistent shape and feel. Has shown a willingness to throw it to both right- and left-handed hitters. First threw the pitch at 2020 Fall Instructional League; pitch has come a long way since then but is still a work in progress. Potential below-average offering.
  Career Notes: Was ranked by some outlets as the top talent in the 2016 draft class, but fell due to signability and makeup concerns. Transferred to IMG Academy in Florida for his junior season but returned to Barnegat High in New Jersey as a senior. Was later retroactively suspended for an improper transfer, causing his team to forfeit two games. Committed to Vanderbilt initially, but commitment changed to Chipola (Fla.) Junior College the week of the draft. Conflicting reports said either Vanderbilt pulled his offer or Groome recommitted to potentially allow him to re-enter the draft in 2017; with SoxProspects sources unanimously confirming the former. Reportedly agreed to a pre-draft deal with the San Diego Padres at picks 24 and 25, but Red Sox selected him anyway and signed him for $457,200 over slot. Entered 2017 as a consensus top 50 prospect. Red Sox were reportedly unhappy with his conditioning entering 2017 Spring Training. Suffered an intercostal strain during his first start of the 2017 season, causing him to miss two months, then was shut down in mid-August 2017 with forearm soreness. Worked out with Chris Sale in Ft. Myers during the 2017-18 offseason. Entered 2018 as a top 100 prospect. Was injured in first spring training start in 2018, leading to May 2018 Tommy John surgery. Returned in August 2019 with a slimmed-down physique, although he had visibly filled back out in 2020. Pitched at the Alternate Training Site in 2020 against much older hitters. Participated in 2016 and 2020 Fall Instructional League. Was added to the 40-man roster during the 2020-21 offseason to protect him from selection in the Rule 5 Draft. Missed three weeks in July 2021 for birth of his daughter, a break seemingly at least in part planned to keep his innings down in the first healthy season of his career.

Summation: Potential up-and-down depth starter. Ceiling of a number five starter. Loss of stuff after return from Tommy John surgery and missed development time have drastically changed his projection since he entered the system. Stuff has never returned to pre-surgery levels. Arsenal now includes four pitches that he is comfortable using, all in the 45-55 range. Lacks a potential plus pitch. Now a sum-of-all-parts pitcher who will need to be able to command all his offerings and mix them to be effective. Command has been inconsistent in 2022, and as a result, has struggled to consistently miss bats, leading to a lot more hard contact. Conditioning will always be a question as well.

Links
Jay Groome video from Lowell (9.2.16)
Scouting Scratch (9.8.16)
Scouting Scratch (9.29.16)
Notes from the Field (3.29.17)
Scouting Scratch - Jay Groome (7.5.17)
Notes from the Field (4.6.18)
State of the System: Mid-Minors Pitchers (4.3.20)

Scouting Report Update (5.27.2020)
Video from Pawtucket (8.4.2020)
Video from Pawtucket (8.10.2020)
Scout Chatter (11.19.20)
Scouting Report Update (3.8.2022)
 
   
     
    Pitching Stats                                          
  year team lg level org age w l % era g gs sv ip h r er hr bb so whip k/bb k/9
2014 Barnegat --- HS --- 15 6 2 --- 0.57 --- --- --- 61.1 --- --- --- --- --- 107 --- --- 15.70
  2015 IMG Academy --- HS --- 16 5 0 1.000 1.22 8 8 0 43.0 --- --- --- --- 9 81 --- 9.00 16.95
  2016 Barnegat --- HS --- 17 2 3 0.200 0.77 --- --- --- 39.2 15 --- --- --- --- 90 --- --- 20.42
  2016 GCL Red Sox GCL Rk Bos 17 0 0 --- 2.25 2 2 0 4.0 3 1 1 0 0 8 0.75 --- 18.00
  2016 Lowell Spinners NYPL A- Bos 17 0 0 --- 3.37 1 1 0 2.2 0 1 1 0 4 2 1.50 0.50 6.75
  2017 Lowell Spinners NYPL A- Bos 18 0 2 0.000 1.64 3 3 0 11.0 5 4 2 0 5 14 0.91 2.80 11.45
  2017 Greenville Drive SAL A Bos 18 3 7 0.300 6.70 11 11 0 44.1 44 34 33 6 25 58 1.56 2.32 11.77
  2018 DNP-Injured --- --- Bos 19 --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
  2019 GCL Red Sox GCL Rk Bos 20 0 0 --- 0.00 2 2 0 2.0 2 0 0 0 0 3 1.00 --- 13.50
  2019 Lowell Spinners NYPL A- Bos 20 0 0 --- 4.50 1 1 0 2.0 3 1 1 0 1 3 2.00 3.00 13.50
  2020 Season Cancelled --- --- Bos 21 --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
  2021 Greenville Drive HAE A+ Bos 22 3 8 0.273 5.29 18 18 0 81.2 76 52 48 12 32 108 1.32 3.28 11.90
  2021 Portland Sea Dogs DNE AA Bos 22 2 0 1.000 2.30 3 3 0 15.2 12 4 4 0 4 26 1.02 6.50 14.90
  2022 Portland Sea Dogs East AA Bos 23 3 4 0.429 3.52 16 14 0 76.2 58 33 30 11 38 81 1.25 2.13 9.51
  2022 Worcester Red Sox IL AAA Bos 23 1 1 0.500 3.94 3 3 0 16.0 17 7 7 2 7 15 1.50 2.14 8.44
   
     
  Advanced Stats & Splits
   
     
  Awards   SoxProspects.com Awards  
  South Atlantic League Pitcher of the Week (July 31 - August 6, 2017)   2017 SoxProspects.com Pre-Season All-Star
SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week (July 31 - August 6, 2017)
2018 SoxProspects.com Pre-Season All-Star
2020 SoxProspects.com Pre-Season All-Star
SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week (June 28-July 4, 2021)
SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week (August 30-September 5, 2021)
2021 SoxProspects.com All-Star
2022 SoxProspects.com Pre-Season All-Star
SoxProspects.com Pitcher of the Week (April 25-May 1, 2022)
 
   

   
     
     
     
 
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