Bittle had an incredible year in 2008, and was selected in the second round by the Yankees. He opted not to sign and return to Ole Miss for his senior year of eligiblity. While he does have somewhat of a max effort delivery, that isn't as great of a concern since he profiles as a short-reliever. His fastball sits in the upper-80s and maxes out in the 90-91 range, but his signature pitch is an absolutely nasty cutter that could have been the single best pitch available in last year's draft and may be the best available in '09. Such signature pitches often are what make the best closers so successful, such as Mariano Rivera's cutter, Trevor Hoffman's changeup and Rollie Fingers' splitter. Bittle's cutter looks like a hybrid of a slider, a split-fingered fastball and a changeup, and he has the intensity that all of the best closers in the game possess.
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