Curveball – Santiago Florez
MLB Pipeline: 55
FanGraphs: 50, future 60
Santiago Florez was an international free agent signing by the Pittsburgh Pirates out of Colombia. Florez has shown potential to be a good pitcher, but just has not seemed to put it all together yet. Florez has a fastball, change up, and curveball, but the curve is his best pitch.
MLB Pipeline states Florez can throw the pitch with tons of spin rate, giving the ball a good amount of movement. Right now, FanGraphs gives it an average grade, and MLB Pipeline says it’s above average. But both see the pitch as above average in the future.
Last season in Bristol, Florez put up some middling numbers. Despite his 3.46 ERA, the right hander walked batters at a 4.54 BB/9 and 11% rate, and struck them out at a sub-par 7.78 K/9 and 19.9% rate. In 41.2 innings, his K/BB ration was a weak 1.71. However, home runs are not an issue for the 19 year old. He gave up just four last season, and gave up zero across 43.1 innings in 2018. His lowest single season ground ball rate was still a strong 44.3% in 2017.
Michael Burrows came in a close second here, but since Florez was a starter as of right now, I weighed him a bit more heavily.