Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects: Best Players Added Via International Free Agency

NEW YORK, NY - JULY 11: Rodolfo Castro #64 of the Pittsburgh Pirates gestures after he hit a home run against the New York Mets during the fifth inning of a game at Citi Field on July 11, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 11: Rodolfo Castro #64 of the Pittsburgh Pirates gestures after he hit a home run against the New York Mets during the fifth inning of a game at Citi Field on July 11, 2021 in New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /
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PITTSBURGH, PA – JULY 20: A New Era pillbox Pittsburgh Pirates baseball hat is seen in the dugout during the game against the Philadelphia Phillies at PNC Park on July 20, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /

Number 3 – right-handed pitcher Po-Yu Chen

Signed out of Taiwan in 2020 the Pittsburgh Pirates were able to land one of the country’s top high school prospects in the trade that sent Jarrod Dyson to the Chicago White Sox. In return, the Pirates got international bonus pool spending, which helped them sign Po-Yu Chen.

Chen looked outstanding during play at the Florida Complex League. He tossed 26 innings, allowing just 2 earned runs, zero walks, and struck out 29 batters. He was eventually promoted to A-Ball Bradenton, but things didn’t go all that well for the right-hander. Chen finished his 2021 with 16 innings of 10 ER, 12 walk, and 15 strikeout ball. Not the greatest ending, but still only a small sample size of 16 innings.

Chen is your command/control type pitcher. He currently only averages out in the 88-92 MPH range with his fastball, but it looks like a solid offering. His slider and curveball look like good offerings. He’ll occasionally throw a change-up, but he doesn’t use it very often. He has a good feel for his four-seamer and his breaking balls. He’s displayed some solid command as well, hitting his spots often.

Chen just turned 20 on October 2nd. The Taiwanese product stands at 6’2″, 187 pounds. It’s quite possible he reaches the 90-94 MPH range with his fastball by the time he fully matures physically. With good command and break on his pitches, even a small uptick in velocity could make his offerings that much better.

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