Three more international prospects to watch in the Pirates’ system for 2024

Let's take a look at some more international prospects in the system to keep tabs on.
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Hung-Leng Chang

Hung-Leng Chang was one of the Pirates’ top international signings from the 2021-2022 off-season. The Taiwanese right-hander made a strong first impression in 2022 but struggled the following year between the Pirates’ Florida Complex League affiliate and Bradenton. Still stationed at Bradenton, Chang has gotten off to a good start to the 2024 season and could soon be staring down a promotion to Greensboro if he keeps it up over the next month or so.

Chang has a five-pitch mix. He is not a hard-throwing pitcher, only averaging 91-92 MPH, but tops out at 95. The pitch has about average ride through the zone with decent horizontal action. His sinker has about the same velocity as his four-seamer, with 18 inches of vertical drop and 18 inches of break. His primary breaking pitch is a slider, which sits around 83-84 with 34 inches of drop and two inches of break. Chang has still induced a whiff a third of the time with this pitch. Chang’s secondary breaking pitch is a curveball that comes in at 77 MPH with over 50 inches of vertical drop. Finally, there’s his off-speed change-up, an 83-84 MPH pitch with 35 inches of drop and 10.5 inches of break.

Chang is a lanky 6’3”, 160-pound hurler. Given his projectable frame, there’s definitely a chance he adds more muscle and adds a tick of velocity over the next year or two. His arm extension comes out to 6.6 feet, which doesn’t add a ton of velocity out of the hand. Chang’s arm slot also sits around six feet.

Chang is 22, so he could see a move to Greensboro in the near future if he keeps pitching well. Chang is definitely one of the more interesting arms to watch in the minor leagues. He has a wide variety of pitches with good command to go along with it.