Pittsburgh Pirates Draft: An Under Slot Pitcher & Position Player to Watch

Mar 30, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Ji Hwan Bae (3) warms up in
Mar 30, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Ji Hwan Bae (3) warms up in / Sam Green-USA TODAY Sports
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Quinn Mathews

Quinn Mathews is a left-handed pitcher for Stanford University. Mathews looked pretty decent in 2022, pitching to the tune of a 3.08 ERA, 1.27 WHIP, and 2.27 K:BB ratio. Mathews showed off a strong ability to prevent home runs from leaving the park with an 0.40 HR/9 rate, while also inducing strikeouts at a 26.3% rate. Where he struggled was with free passes, allowing a walk to 11.6% of the batters faced.

Mathews was used as both a reliever and starting pitcher, appearing in 27 games with a third being starts. He also saved nine games. The southpaw was then picked in the 19th round by the Tampa Bay Rays, however, the two sides could not come to an agreement. Mathews returned to Stanford as a senior in 2023 and has gotten off to a great start in 2023.

He’s started seven games and pitched 45.1 innings, working to a 2.78 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, and 2.41 K:BB ratio. His HR/9 currently sits at 0.60 while his walk rate comes in at 11.9%, but has seen a slight uptick in strikeout rate, up to 28.6%. Overall, his peripherals haven’t changed all that much, but given that he’s been able to do it primarily as a starter this year.

Mathews’ fastball has impressive vertical movement with his fastball, which helps makes up for his four-seamer’s lack of velocity. He only sits in the low-90s, and tops out at 95. Though some evaluators believe there could be a little more velocity given more development. His changeup is an above-average pitch, though his two breaking balls are average at best, but can separate them in terms of velocity.

Mathews is currently in his age-22 season and stands at 6’2” and weighs 192 pounds. Mathews has some unorthodox mechanics and throws with an over-head arm slot. He’s definitely an interesting arm, and will likely sign for less than his slot value, given he is a senior.