Pirates Sign 17-Year-Old Pitcher From South Africa

The Pittsburgh Pirates have signed 17-year-old right-handed pitcher Vince Deyzel out of South Africa. He is listed at 6’2″, 180 pounds and just celebrated his birthday on Monday. In December, Deyzel took part in the Major League Baseball African Elite Camp, where fellow South African Gift Ngoepe was one of the instructors. Also there representing the Pirates was Dave Turgeon, who is the Assistant Field Coordinator. The camp is for the best young talent from around Africa, giving them a chance to train with Major League baseball instructors.

Update 8:30 AM: Deyzel hasn’t played baseball long and has spent even less time on the mound. He started playing four years ago as a third baseman and outfielder, occasionally pitching. Just recently, he began to pitch full-time. He throws a fastball, curve and change-up right now. Back in December, he was hitting 88 MPH with his fastball. The plans now are for Deyzel to come to Bradenton in the summer for about five weeks and then next year he will report to minor league camp in February, so don’t expect to see him pitch in the system until 2016. Right now, he is currently in the middle of his baseball season, playing for a local club.

You can view the rest of the Pirates International signings here for the current 2014-15 signing period.

  • any pictures of this kid? curiousity is killing me.

  • When will pirates city be open to the public?

  • NH is getting creative again, it’s definitely worth a shot!

    • If you can find a kid that hits 88 at age 16 with less than a year experience on the mound, sign him. That’s always a good policy

      • Makes sense to me, John. How much of a bonus did this kid get?

      • what a gift – to be able to throw a baseball that hard. You don’t really appreciate how unique that is until you try throwing a ball as hard as you can and see the results…..

        • Oh man isn’t that the truth. I sit in the mid sixties with no command and no breaking porches!

        • In high school, I was an outfielder with a terrible arm, whose “fastball” sat at 55. I actually throw harder now, and I feel like I’m throwing 90, but I’m pretty sure it’s actually closer to 60. My mechanics are technically flawless, and I’m a big guy, so when I watch Jesse Chavez (for example) hit 95, it always perplexes me.

          Perfect mechanics and strong arms don’t lead to big velocity (though you can improve with those things), and so whatever it is that lets people throw so hard so effortlessly is just such a rare and unexplainable gift to me. (And one I really wish I had.)