SANTIAGO FLOREZ, RIGHT HANDED PITCHER
|Born: May 9, 2000
Signed: Int’l Free Agent, 2016, Pittsburgh Pirates
How Acquired: International Free Agent
|WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE|
|Florez received a bonus that was near the top of the limited range that the Pirates normally pay to pitchers on the international front. His size and the fact that he was reportedly already throwing 92 mph at age 16 were undoubtedly enticing. By August 2018, he was reaching 96, and he was throwing 95-97 in 2019. He throws a change and slider that are still developing.
Florez stayed in the rotation throughout the DSL season. Especially considering that he was only a little over 17, that shows the Pirates considered him one of the team’s best pitching prospects. He got reasonable results, although his walk and K rates were bad.
Florez made ten starts in the GCL. His performance was uneven, with some very good games and some weaker ones. Mediocre control was one consistent pattern. Opponents weren’t able to drive the ball much against him, slugging only .280.
Florez spent the season in the Bristol rotation. He put up similar numbers to the previous season, but made progress with his pitches.
Florez split his season evenly between Bradenton and Greensboro, making nine starts at each stop. The similarity, though, ended there. He dominated at Bradenton, with opponents batting only .165. After the promotion, opponents hit almost exactly twice that, at .329. One possible explanation is that he was throwing a great many breaking balls at Bradenton. The pitch was very effective at that level, but evidently didn’t work as well at the higher level. He also wasn’t throwing quite as hard as he had in 2019. For the season, Florez had a huge reverse platoon split.
Florez returned to Greensboro for the season and pitched in relief apart from four starts. He continued to struggle with the strike zone and opponents put up a 280/368/441 line. Florez again had a large reverse platoon split; left-handed hitters batted just .624 against him, while right-handed hitters torched him for a .929 OPS.
Florez has had two rough seasons and doesn’t appear ready for AA.
|2023: Minor League Contract|
|Signing Bonus: $150,000
MiLB Debut: 2017
MLB Debut: N/A
MiLB FA Eligible: 2023
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: 2020
Added to 40-Man: N/A
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
|July 2, 2016: Signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as an international free agent.