At the University of Georgia, Walsh played both ways, pitching in relief and occasionally as a starter, while also being a mainstay in the Bulldogs' lineup. The 39th-round Draft pick in 2015 mostly hit at the start of his pro career, save for a couple of relief appearances in 2016, and he hit well. His bat propelled him up the organizational ladder in 2018, when he hit 29 homers across three levels. It was also the 2018 season when he took the mound again, making eight relief appearances. He continued doing both things in 2019, crushing 39 homers in Triple-A and pitching in 13 games en route to bucking the odds and earning a call up to Los Angeles.
Walsh has gotten better with age, especially offensively. He led the Pacific Coast League in OPS in 2019, cutting his strikeout rate some while setting a career high for walk rate, which helped him tap into his raw power more consistently. There’s no wow stuff on the mound, but he’ll sit at 90 mph from the left side with a decent feel to spin a breaking ball and showed in a brief stint he can get big league hitters out.
Walsh has nothing left to prove in the Minors, especially from the offensive side of things. He’s also a solid defender at first who can play an outfield corner if needed. The main problem is finding room on the Angels' roster, with perhaps his two-way versatility working to his advantage.
Scouting grades: Hit: 40 | Power: 50 | Run: 35 | Arm: 60 | Field: 50 | Overall: 40
Scouting grades: Fastball: 50 | Curveball: 50 | Control: 45 | Overall: 40
Walsh had an up-and-down career as a two-way player at Georgia, serving at times as a lefty swingman and showing glimpses of offensive ability as a hitter. Taken with no expectations as a 39th-round senior sign, Walsh focused on his bat for much of his pro career. Playing mostly first base and a little outfield, he'd always hit well, then broke out across three levels and led the organization in RBIs and finished tied for the lead in home runs. At the same time, he started re-introducing pitching to his resume, showing some aptitude as a lefty reliever and making it to the big leagues in May as a two-way player.
Walsh's raw power from the left side has always been intriguing and he started tapping into it consistently in 2018. There were plenty of strikeouts, but also a much higher walk rate, and that improved approach helped him get more pitches to drive. Defensively, he probably is a first baseman only, but it's the bat that gives him a chance to hit in the big leagues.
It's hard to evaluate what kind of pitcher Walsh is. Without any real instruction or program, he was touching 93 mph with his fastball and could spin an occasional plus breaking ball. After Walsh's offseason with a dedicated throwing program, the Angels are anxious to see if he can be a two-way player at the highest level.