The Pittsburgh Pirates have already added three arms in this draft to go along with a top bat. Who did they grab with their fourth-round pick?
So far the Pittsburgh Pirates 2020 draft has gone relatively close to what was expected. Coming into the draft it made sense for the team to target pitching prospects. Based on MLB Pipeline’s top 30 list, only 36 percent of the prospects were pitchers. That number needs to be closer to 50% percent and so far it should be with the team adding three top 30 arms. Of course, they also added one of the top bats in the draft with their first-round pick in Nick Gonzalez.
The draft is quickly winding down as the team has now made their fourth-round selection. With the selection at 108th overall, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected right-handed pitcher Jack Hartman. Hartman went to a Junior College before ending up at Appalachian State over the last two years.
The right-hander stands at 6’3” and weighs around 215 pounds. His results in college have been mixed, posting an ERA of almost 5.00 in 2019 but rebounded to a low 3.00 ERA before this year was finished. Overall, he throws 94-96 miles per hour and has a high spin breaking pitch. He is a two pitch type of arm that puts his ceiling as a backend of the bullpen type arm. Here is more from Baseball America, who is the only publication to rank him, 286th overall:
In fact, inconsistency has been one of the concerns scouts have noted of Hartman this spring. When he’s on, Hartman has a heater in the 94-97 mph range, with a banger of a breaking ball while throwing solid strikes. When he’s not on, the fastball still comes out well, but his slider looks more like a well below-average pitch and his control is a much bigger concern.
Hartman is a college senior which severely limits his bonus leverage. The Pittsburgh Pirates should be able to save a good chunk against their overall draft pool. They then will use the saved money for Mlodzinksi and Jones, their competitive balance pick and second round pick. While this is not as an exciting pick as the first few were, Hartman at least flashes above-average metrics and looks to have a good chance at being a bullpen arm.