D-backs Select Duke RHP Bryce Jarvis With 18th Pick in MLB Draft

(AP Photo/Ben McKeown)

Duke right-handed pitcher Bryce Jarvis is quite familiar with the Diamondbacks.

His father, Kevin Jarvis, pitched for the club in 2006 and is currently a scout with the organization.

Now, Bryce will have a chance to play for the same team as his father after the Snakes selected him with the No. 18 pick in the 2020 MLB Draft.

“He grew up in a clubhouse. That matters,” ESPN’s Eduardo Perez said on the broadcast. “The organization knows that and that will be an easier building block that he has and the improvement he had from last year to who he is now; he gets it, he knows how to get to the big leagues. The hardest part, as my dad told me is ‘now you have to learn how to stay in the big leagues.’ That’s going to be the key for Bryce.”

The 6-foot-2 pitcher was a 36th round selection by the New York Yankees in 2019, but opted to return to the Blue Devils.

In preparation for the 2020 season, he added 20 pounds to his frame as well as 4-5 miles per hour of velocity, according to ESPN’s Kyle Peterson. 

That jump helped him post a .67 ERA in 27 innings with 40 strikeouts in the four starts he had in a cut-short 2020 season. He walked only two batters in that time. He also happened to throw Duke’s only perfect game in school history, striking out 15 batters in the process.

Now, according to Peterson, the key for Jarvis will be if that uptick in velocity is sustainable. 

This draft will be much different than previous years. The usual 40-round adventure will just be five rounds due to the limited scouting and playing opportunities from the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Last year, the Diamondbacks held eight of the top 100 picks in the draft. After selecting three high-upside prep players with their first three picks, they selected three college arms in Drey Jameson, Ryne Nelson and Tommy Henry.

It will be interesting to see if the Diamondbacks continue to go with proven college prospects after Jarvis given the limited time to scout in-person this year. 

The Diamondbacks pick again with the No. 33 overall pick in the Competitive Balance A round.