Five Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects People Have Forgotten About

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RHP Ricky DeVito

The Pittsburgh Pirates acquired Ricky DeVito in the Richard Rodríguez trade. DeVito was an eighth-round pick by the Atlanta Braves in the 2019 draft. After a solid debut in 2019, DeVito made his way to High-A where he got off to a good start. However, he was injured for most of the season and was limited to just 20.1 innings. DeVito was somewhat of an unknown quantity given his little professional playing time, and while there were some positives, there certainly were some negatives.

Let's first look at the good news. DeVito struck out 27.7% of the batters he faced. He also had a solid 0.77 HR/9 rate. DeVito was a ground ball machine, inducing grounders at a 54.7% rate. Among minor leaguers with 70+ IP, he had the 43rd-highest ground ball rate. DeVito displayed an elite splitter along with a quality slider. His velocity also sat in the low-to-mid-90s. 

Now here's the bad news. While DeVito displayed quality stuff, he also walked 13.5% of the batters he faced. With a .333 batting average on balls in play, good batted ball luck also wasn't on DeVito's side. Overall, he owned a 5.40 ERA, 4.69 FIP, and 1.53 WHIP. Command has never been one of DeVito's strong suits.

DeVito has quick arm action but has changed up his motion a decent bit since college. It's a much cleaner movement that leads to more consistency with his front foot and delivery. Just watch a video of his time at Seton Hall and last year with Greensboro, and you'll notice a fair difference.

Next year will be DeVito's age-24 campaign. There's definitely some promise here. He has two plus-plus offerings between his splitter and slider and an above-average fastball. But there's a laundry list of players whose stuff has far exceeded their ability to command the ball and paid dearly for it.