Pittsburgh Pirates: Three High School Pitching Draft Prospects to Watch

(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
3 of 4
Next
WHITBY, ENGLAND – JULY 06: A woman attaches a Jolly Roger pirate flag to the railings of a pub during the first day of the Whitby Captain Cook Festival on 6 July, 2018 in Whitby, England. The 3-day festival marks the 250th anniversary of James Cook’s first voyage aboard HM Bark Endeavour to the then-unchartered Southern Seas, today New Zealand and Australia. Captain Cook was born in Marton near Middlesbrough and moved to Whitby as an apprentice with a shipping firm. Later he joined the Royal Navy rising through the ratings to become a Captain. His famous ship HM Bark Endeavour was built in Whitby. (Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images)
WHITBY, ENGLAND – JULY 06: A woman attaches a Jolly Roger pirate flag to the railings of a pub during the first day of the Whitby Captain Cook Festival on 6 July, 2018 in Whitby, England. The 3-day festival marks the 250th anniversary of James Cook’s first voyage aboard HM Bark Endeavour to the then-unchartered Southern Seas, today New Zealand and Australia. Captain Cook was born in Marton near Middlesbrough and moved to Whitby as an apprentice with a shipping firm. Later he joined the Royal Navy rising through the ratings to become a Captain. His famous ship HM Bark Endeavour was built in Whitby. (Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images) /

LHP Brandon Barriera

In 2021, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected lefty Anthony Solometo with the first in the second round. Going into the draft, Solometo was considered one of the best command pitchers available. This year, that title could go to another southpaw, Brandon Barriera.

Although Barriera doesn’t bring the kind of deception Solometo does, he’s still a highly talented pitcher who could go top 10-15 in this year’s draft. He could go higher if a team decides to go under slot. Barriera has a 55-control grade per MLB Pipeline and a 60-command grade on FanGraphs.

Barriera isn’t a flamethrower. His fastball only averages out in the low-90’s, but he can reach back for more velo when he needs to. He has topped out at 96 MPH before and has shown plus spin. He also has a curveball that hits 3000 RPM and a change-up that has some deception because of his arm speed.

All of Barriera’s offerings already play at an above-average level. Given his command, they all could be well above average offerings in the future. The southpaw has a 6’1, 170-pound frame, and he’ll likely add more muscle and velocity as he gets older. But his ability to locate and throw strikes could make him an underslot pick. He could fall to the 2nd round because of his commitment to Vanderbilt.

facebooktwitterreddit