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Angels Cam Minacci carving All-Star path to the Majors




By Ryan Falla, AngelsWin.com Staff Reporter

Despite the Angels negative developmental reputations coming into 2024 recent months have shown an elite class of talent waiting in the wings for the organization. Whereas this time last year Angel prospects came as a group of unknowns this past Spring Training has revealed a favorable future on the Angels horizons. Standing tall amongst a brevy of extreme upside future MLB talent is former Wake Forest superstar closer Cam Minacci, who comes as a potential fireballer of the future for the Angels big league backend. Formerly one the best college arms in the US with a school tailor made to produce MLB talent, Minacci looks to elevate his dominant reputation as a now member of the Los Angeles Angels.

“[Wake Forest] did a lot of the leg work. All we had to do was execute the plan they gave us. The first thing I saw was the physical strides necessary to pitch at a high level in that league, but the X factor was their approach to the mental game. As I grew and got older as a player my mental game grew as well. Being able to go out there two or three times a week and have consistent stuff or have a tough game and get the chance to bounce back was a really big thing for me, they did an excellent job with that. I think that that's where Wake Forest excels significantly.”

Famously entering the organization as a high octane two pitch reliever, Minacci throws an abusive fastball/slider combo that consistently fills up the zone and keeps him ahead of the count regularly. His fastball tends to sit in the mid 90’s while topping out near 100mph with a hard trapdoor slider that touches 90mph. Some professional tweaks within the Angels system should see Minacci spin a few more mph on each pitch and exponentially elevate his stuff into Major League elite-tier. His plus-plus ability to miss bats will be supplemented by a recently added change-up, which by the looks of Spring Training will come as a massive boon to his furthered development. After starting his professional career with a 10K stretch across 8.1IP (1 BB) in Low A he furthered his summer momentum into a spring that saw Minacci fan 5 hitters over 3IP, a streak which looks to power Minacci through 2024.

“I added the change up, it’s a pitch that I want to throw through the year. It was something that I focused on in big league camp, working on the change up with those guys. I've been throwing it a bunch. Most of the time I will throw the two pitches, the fastball and the slider. But I think having the change up as a third offering that I can throw consistently will definitely aid in that process.”

His mental edge on the game comes as no surprise after learning the stars affinity for the study of psychology, Minacci himself majoring in psychology as a student of Wake Forest. As an avid reader and writer in the study Minacci takes a great care in maintaining a daily mental clarity so the baseball may flow at all times. His work ethic can be summed up with a quote by a favored philosopher of his, the late stoic Seneca; “If you lay hands on today, you will find yourself less dependent on tomorrow”. To leave nothing undone on the day is to leave nothing to chance, and to leave nothing to chance is to be in full control. As any manager in the game would say: “you have to love the way he goes about his business.”

“To keep your stuff physically where you want requires a detailed plan and I have a pretty detailed physical plan, but I also have a pretty detailed mental plan that I go through every day. I keep a daily journal, I keep a daily planner, I do daily breathing exercises and daily meditations. Those are what have really helped me maintain that approach. Calming my mind down and quieting my brain is what allows me to keep that same approach every day. You know doing that kind of leg work on the front end allows you to go out and play free. And play very fluid.”

Cam Minacci looks to make his MLB debut sometime 2026, though I would estimate it sooner considering Angels organizational habits. Depending on major league roster health and personal performance we could very well see Minacci making a debut in late 2024. His current status as a member of the High A Tri City Dust Devils puts him a step away from the MLB breeding ground of Double A, and from there it's simply a matter of performance.

Should the Major League ship sail smoothly through the 2024 season there will be less need to push Minacci to the MLB level and allow his natural talents to develop at a proper pace. All in all Minacci looks to provide the Angels some serious thump as a future 8th/9th inning guy in what is looking to be one of the nastiest bullpens the Angels have developed in a long time. Though it takes more than a bullpen to solidify a decade long run it appears fortunes are slowly falling into favor in Anaheim with the growth of their young prospect crop. One or two more years of patient development will see the Angels return to the top of the AL West for years to come, and you can guarantee Cam Minacci will be at the forefront of that future sustained success with his fireballing ways and elite mental rigidity.

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