Pittsburgh Pirates: Three Potential Fifth Round Draft Picks

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May 24, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates general manager Ben Cherington talks on the phone in the dugout before the game against the Colorado Rockies at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates will have the 140th overall selection in the 5th round and these three players could be on the board when they are on the clo

When you think of the MLB draft, you usually think of the top players available. This year’s draft class includes guys like Jackson Holliday, Termarr Johnson, Druw Jones, and Brooks Lee. Not many pay attention to later-round draft picks past the first round or two. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t anyone interesting selected.

The Pittsburgh Pirates have the fourth overall pick in this year’s draft, and by the fifth round, they will have the 140th overall selection. It’s hard to predict who will be available and who will already be off the board by then, but we can have a general idea based on draft prospect rankings.

The fifth round is still relatively early in the draft, and the Pirates might find a nice player at the 140th overall selection. So today, I want to look at three prospects who could be on the Pirates’ radar when the fifth round comes around.

RHP Luis Ramirez

Long Beach State right-hander Luis Ramirez is entering this year’s draft looking to get selected in the early rounds. He is currently MLB Pipeline’s 141st best draft prospect and should go sometime in the early 5th round. He has some underrated talent, partly because he was injured this year.

In 33 innings, Ramirez had a 2.14 ERA and 1.07 WHIP. Ramirez posted his best single-season strikeout rate in college. He K’d just over a quarter of batters faced with a 25.9% K-rate. Plus, he only had a 7.5% walk rate. Impressively, Ramirez allowed zero home runs. He’s been a massive home run suppressor throughout his college career, allowing just three in 125.1 innings of work.

Ramirez might not have anything super overpowering, but his stuff is pretty solid overall. His sinking fastball is what helps him keep the ball on the ground. Ramirez had a GB% over 60%, and his fastball helped play a large role in that. He only averages out around 92-94 MPH but tops out at 95-96 MPH. His slider comes in around the 78-80 MPH range and has become a better pitch this year. He has tightened up his slider, and it looks like a plus offering. He worked on his changeup in the Cape Cod League in 2021, and it’s now a very usable pitch for the righty.

Ramirez’s command is also on the upward trend. Overall, the right-hander has shown a decent improvement from last year to this year. The main reason scouts have been tepid on him is his missed starts. However, if he is healthy come draft time, I would rather see the Pittsburgh Pirates go with someone trending in the right direction regarding their stuff and performance.

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