First-round pick Newcomb finishes strong

First-round pick Newcomb finishes strong

ARLINGTON -- Angels first-round pick Sean Newcomb began his professional career with an 8.44 ERA in his first five games, then finished it by giving up one run and striking out 16 in his last nine innings.

The key, according to general manager Scott Servais: "He finally put the fear of God in people."

Newcomb, a 21-year-old left-hander, is listed at 6-foot-5 with a muscular, 240-pound frame. He gave up 10 runs in his first 10 2/3 innings, appearing first in rookie ball and then for Class A Burlington.

Servais remembers a defining moment on Aug. 27, when a scrawny No. 2 hitter reached on a bunt single and Newcomb stared him down -- then went on to strike out the next five batters on his way to 10 K's in four scoreless innings.

Newcomb, who finished the season with five innings of one-run ball in a playoff game for the Burlington Bees, was taken with the No. 15 overall pick out of the University of Hartford, representing the Angels' first first-round pick in three years.

"He's very imposing," Servais said of Newcomb, who will soon go to the instructional league. "He's an imposing dude. And he got after it a little bit more in his last couple of outings, with a little better mound presence."

Alden Gonzalez is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Gonzo and "The Show", and follow him on Twitter @Alden_Gonzalez. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.