Two potential LSU pitching prospects who could be on the Pittsburgh Pirates’ draft radar

After taking Paul Skenes from Louisiana State University last year, the Pirates could take another LSU pitcher in this year's draft.

LSU Tigers line up along the dugout with a modest number of fans behind them. University of Oregon
LSU Tigers line up along the dugout with a modest number of fans behind them. University of Oregon / Dana Sparks/The Register-Guard via Imagn
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Gage Jump

Like Holman, Gage Jump also wasn’t a teammate of Skenes last year, and was also drafted by another MLB club in 2021. Jump was taken in the 18th round by the San Diego Padres. The lefty originally attended UCLA, but is now a Tiger. He missed all of 2023 recovering from Tommy John surgery, but has thus far picked up right where he left off in 2022 with UCLA.

Jump has pitched 22.2 innings with a 2.38 ERA, 3.56 K:BB ratio, and 0.93 WHIP. He has struck out over a third of the batters who have squared off against him with a 34.8% K% while allowing just a single home run. Limiting walks, however, hasn’t been his strong suit so far, with a 9.8% BB% through the small sample size.

The Southpaw throws about as hard as Holman, sitting low/mid-90s with his fastball, but with good riding life. But his best pitch is his curveball with significant downward action. The rest of his repotier consists of a slider and a change-up. Between the two pitches, his slider is the better offering. But he has shown a feel for his off-speed pitch and it’s flashed potential throughout the year.

Jump is ranked as the 46th best draft prospect by MLB Pipeline, the 65th best by Baseball America, and the 77th best by Future Star Series. That would fall closer to the Pirates’ third-round pick than their second-round pick. Still, like stated earlier, there’s plenty of time between now and the draft to see where he eventually ends up. But I think there’s a real possibility he becomes an early second-round pick.