Bahamas – RHP Tahnaj Thomas
The Bahamas have very little representation in Major League Baseball. Only eight players have ever appeared in the MLB from the Bahamas, with all but 2 coming before 1985. Another player could join their ranks in right-hander Tahnaj Thomas.
Acquired back in the 2018-2019 off-season, Thomas was part of the deal that got the Pirates Erik Gonzalez. Thomas is a big, athletic right-hander who transitioned to the mound from shortstop. He has a big fastball that can hit triple-digits, as well as a great slider. The issue is he has no good third offering nor good command.
The right-hander pitched 60.2 innings at High-A Greensboro but struggled to the tune of a 5.19 ERA, 6.49 FIP, and 1.58 WHIP. Despite his powerful stuff, Thomas only had a 22.1% K-rate. But it was clear command was a massive problem. He allowed walks at a 12.5% rate and 1.93 HR/9 rate.
Thomas had a great year in 2019 and has shown talent as a potential future reliever. Thomas has a lot of risk, and the Pirates opted not to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft. If and when the draft happens, Thomas could end up being selected. He’s almost a perfect fit of the Rule 5 pitcher: a physically strong athlete with extremely raw but extremely powerful stuff. Regardless of where he ends up, whether that’s with the Pittsburgh Pirates or another team, he’ll likely be the 9th player from the Bahamas to play in the majors.