A fun pastime when you get a little bored is to go back and read old Baseball America scouting reports of now-established Major League veterans. It's always a kick to see how far some players have progressed, or not progressed. With that in mind, I'm going to share a couple reports written up in 1984 about a high-school pitcher named Greg Maddux back in 1984.
These aren't BA reports; rather, they come from actual team scouts. They were originally linked at SI back in 2008, but for whatever reason it seems they're just now making the rounds. Ever wonder what Maddux's big weakness was when he was 18? Let's find out together!
Teenage Maddux had all the pitches, all the movement, and the promising frame. The only thing holding him back? Control. It's absurd to think about now, since Maddux blossomed into one of the most polished starting pitchers the game has ever seen, but he had his flaws just like everyone else.
Over the first four years of Maddux's big league career, his BB/9 was 3.3. Over the next four years, it was 2.3. And over the remainder of his career, it was 1.3. Greg Maddux arrived in 1986, but he didn't really become Greg Maddux until the early or mid-90s. Then he was just ridiculous.
The big takeaway from all this? It isn't that scouts are stupid. It's that players can surprise you. Sometimes development can be unpredictable, and sometimes development can be extreme.