Dauri Moreta

DAURI MORETA, RIGHT HANDED PITCHER
Born: April 15, 1996
Height: 6’2″
Weight: 185
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Signed: Int’l Free Agent, 2015, Cincinnati Reds
How Acquired: Trade (from Reds)
Country: Dominican Republic
Agent: Nova Sports Agency
WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE
Moreta spent a long time in the lower levels of the Reds’ system after signing in 2015.  He didn’t reach AA until his age 25 season.  He throws a fastball, slider and change.  The latter two appear to be very good pitches, based on Statcast data.  The fastball, which sits about 96, may not be.  To begin with, depending on which tracking data source you use, he either throws a fastball (FanGraphs) or a four-seamer and sinker (Statcast).  The fastball has gotten hit very hard in the majors, although Statcast thinks it’s the sinker that got hammered and that the four-seamer was a good pitch.  He’s shown good control in recent years.  He’s an extreme flyball pitcher and seems to pitch up in the zone a lot.  During his career, he’s pitched exclusively in relief except for one opener-type start for the Reds in 2022.  The Pirates acquired Moreta for Kevin Newman.

2015
DSL:  1-2-4, 1.69 ERA, 1.22 WHIP, 21.1 IP, 3.0 BB/9, 12.7 K/9

Moreta pitched well in his debut in the DSL.

2016
R:  3-3-4, 2.05 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 30.2 IP, 5.3 BB/9, 15.6 K/9
R+:  0-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, 2.2 IP, 10.1 BB/9, 10.1 K/9

The Reds moved Moreta up to rookie ball and he again pitched well except for control problems.  He missed a lot of bats.  Moreta also made two appearances in advanced rookie ball at the end of the season.

2017
R+:  0-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1.75 WHIP, 4.0 IP, 9.0 BB/9, 18.0 K/9
A:  1-2-0, 4.94 ERA, 0.99 WHIP, 27.1 IP, 3.0 BB/9, 12.2 K/9

Moreta returned to advanced rookie ball for a few games, then moved up to low A.  In his first three games he gave up ten earned runs over three innings, which accounts for the bad ERA despite very good numbers overall.  His ERA was 1.85 after those first games.

2018
R+:  1-1-3, 4.91 ERA, 1.73 WHIP, 11.0 IP, 7.4 BB/9, 17.2 K/9
A:  3-2-1, 7.25 ERA, 1.50 WHIP, 44.2 IP, 3.6 BB/9, 11.7 K/9

The Reds sent Moreta back to low A and he had a rough time there.  The Reds eventually sent him back to advanced rookie ball and he had trouble throwing strikes.

2019
A+:  1-0-2, 2.35 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, 57.1 IP, 1.4 BB/9, 10.0 K/9

In high A, Moreta put together a very good season, including exceptional control.

2020
DNP

2021
AA:  4-0-0, 1.35 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, 26.2 IP, 1.7 BB/9, 12.5 K/9
AAA:  2-0-8, 0.68 ERA, 0.68 WHIP, 26.1 IP, 1.4 BB/9, 7.2 K/9
MLB:  0-0-0, 2.45 ERA, 0.82 WHIP, 3.2 IP, 2.5 BB/9, 9.8 K/9

Moreta seemingly had a breakout season, starting in AA and reaching the majors for four games at the end of the season.  Baseball America ranked him the Reds’ fifteenth best prospect after the season.

2022
AAA:  3-4-1, 3.95 ERA, 1.57 WHIP, 27.1 IP, 4.0 BB/9, 9.2 K/9
MLB:  0-2-1, 5.40 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 38.1 IP, 3.1 BB/9, 9.2 K/9

Moreta took a big step backward from the previous season.  He opened in the majors and struggled there.  After a mid-May game in which he allowed five runs without getting an out, the Reds sent him to AAA.  He didn’t pitch especially well there, either.  At both levels, gopher balls were a big problem.  Moreta gave up one every four and a half innings in AAA and every 3.8 innings in the majors.  The Reds brought him back up in mid-June and he was up and down several times after that.  Moreta got much better results in the majors after the early season, but he was helped by a very low BABIP.

It’s hard to say just how much potential Moreta might have.  He did pitch very well in 2021, but not in 2022, including his time in AAA.  The longball problem has to be a concern.  He has two options left.

CONTRACT INFORMATION
2023: Major League Minimum
PLAYER INFORMATION
Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2015
MLB Debut: 9/26/2021
MiLB FA Eligible: N/A
MLB FA Eligible: 2029
Rule 5 Eligible: N/A
Added to 40-Man: 9/22/2021
Options Remaining: 2 (USED:  2022)
MLB Service Time: 1.120
TRANSACTIONS
March 16, 2015: Signed by the Cincinnati Reds as an international free agent.
September 22, 2021: Contract purchased by the Cincinnati Reds.
November 19, 2022: Traded by the Cincinnati Reds to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Kevin Newman.