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2021 South Side Sox Top Prospect No. 32: Caleb Freeman

If this righty reliever can continue to hone both his command and control, expect him to move up the ranks rather quickly

Sean Williams/South Side Sox

Caleb Freeman

Right-Handed Relief Pitcher
190 pounds
Age: 23
SSS rank among all right-handed relief pitchers in the system: 4
2020 SSHP Top Prospect Ranking: 53

Despite incredible stuff, Caleb Freeman struggled for Texas Tech largely because of his lack of control and command.

His best year with the Red Raiders was his sophomore one in 2018, when he finished with a 5.18 ERA and 1.61 WHIP in 22 contests spanning 33 innings, as he allowed 35 hits and 18 walks while fanning 31. Freeman’s junior season this year saw him slip to a 6.89 ERA and 2.49 WHIP in 15 23 innings, as he relinquished 26 hits (.388 OBA) and 13 walks (16.3%) while also striking out 13.

The White Sox drafted Freeman in the 15th round with the hopes that they could help him reach his high ceiling. And so far, so good.

Freeman did well at all three of his stops (AZL, Great Falls and Kannapolis) in 2019. In a combined 17 games totaling 24 ⅔ innings, he saved four with a 2.19 ERA and 0.97 WHIP. In those innings, Freeman allowed just 15 hits (.170 OBA) and nine walks (8.9%) while striking out a whopping 38 batters (37.6%). It’s like he found his control and command overnight.

Just before the draft, Baseball America stated Freeman’s fastball typically runs 94-98 mph and has flashes of a plus curve. However, they continued, his 20-grade control and command keeps him from taking advantage of his high-end stuff.

Freeman will likely to return to Kannapolis to begin the 2021 season, as he only entered two games for the Intimidators before season’s end. If he can continue to hone both his command and control, expect him to move up the ranks rather quickly.