The Pittsburgh Pirates have drafted right-handed pitcher Austin Strickland in the eighth round of the MLB Draft. Strickland was rated 302nd overall by Baseball America.
Austin Strickland, RHP, Kentucky
Age: 21 | DOB: 5/31/02 | HT: 6′ 2″ | WT: 210 | B/T: R/R
Strickland had a 5.04 ERA in 55.1 innings with Kentucky, making three starts in 20 appearances. He struck out 58 and walked 20.
He throws from a three-quarters slot with a well controlled delivery.
Fastball (55): The fastball sits 93-94 and has been up to 97, with sinking action that leads to a high ground ball rate.
Slider (45+): He throws a curveball that is upper-70s and a slider that is low-80s. The two pitches bleed together, but he can throw both for strikes.
Changeup (35): His changeup has been mid-80s, but he lacks feel for the pitch and rarely uses it.
Control (55): Strickland throws all of his pitches for strikes, controlling his delivery, and maintaining a good walk rate.
Overall (40): Strickland made a few starts in the Cape Cod League in 2022, and had a strong summer. He’s mostly been effective in a multi-inning relief role.
Tim is the owner, producer, editor, and lead writer of PiratesProspects.com. He has been running Pirates Prospects since 2009, becoming the first new media reporter and outlet covering the Pirates at the MLB level in 2011 and 2012. His work can also be found in Baseball America, where he has been a contributor since 2014 and the Pirates' correspondent since 2019.