The Baltimore Orioles face the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday and minor league pitcher Hunter Harvey gets the start.
The young Baltimore Orioles pitcher has not yet pitched in Double-A or Triple-A, but he will get the opportunity of a lifetime on the Big League rubber.
Harvey was drafted by the Orioles in 2013 in the first round of the draft right out of high school. He has 38 starts in his four seasons in the Orioles system. His lack of starts in that many seasons was due to Tommy John surgery in 2016 and a broken leg in 2015.
Harvey is 23 years old. He is from Catawba, North Carolina and stands 6’3, weighing in at 175 pounds.
In his four seasons with the Orioles, he has an ERA of 2.56. He had eight starts in 2017 in Single-A, Single-A-, and Rookie ball. In 2017, he ended up with a combined ERA of 0.96. He spent most of 2017 recovering from his Tommy John surgery.
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This poor kid has suffered way too many injuries. And, it is evident in the lack of innings pitched over the years. He only has one season with more than 26 innings. Hopefully, he can stay injury-free. Even though most managers closely watch their pitchers in spring training, Showalter’s should watch Harvey closer than his other pitchers. It would be a shame if he threw one too many pitches in this early spring training start.
According to Brooks Baseball, back in 2014, Harvey could reach speeds in the low 90s with his four-seam fastball. He also has a curve and change that have good differentiation in speeds from the fastball. Most of his starts in 2017 were short rehab starts. He started in eight games, but only threw in 18.2 innings.
MLB Pipeline claims that Harvey’s fastball can hit the mid-90s and he can throw it with command.
If he can stay healthy, he could be a real asset for the Orioles future. According to the MLB Pipeline, he is currently the O’s fourth-best prospect. He’s ranked behind Austin Hays, Ryan Mountcastle, and Chance Sisco. Keep your eyes on Harvey as he could work his way up the ladder rather quickly, but only if he can stay injury-free.