Today the Pirates and Rays officially wrapped up their Chris Archer trade from July 31 by sending over the player to be named later. That player to be named later is 19 year old right handed pitcher Shane Baz, the 12th overall selection of the 2017 MLB Draft out of a Texas high school.
Baz made 10 starts in both 2017 and 2018, pitching in the Gulf Coast League with a 3.80 ERA and 1.69 WHIP in 2017, and in the Appalachian League with a 3.97 ERA and 1.50 WHIP this season. After striking out 19 in 23.2 innings last year, Baz has struck out 54 over 45.1 innings this year- though walks have plagued him in both seasons with his career 4.8 BB/9 rate.
Baz ranked as the #4 prospect in the Pirates system, and #95 prospect in MLB according to MLB Pipeline. The 6’3”, 190 pound hurler has potentially six pitches(yes six) with the potential for up to four of them to grade out as plus, including a possible plus plus fastball. Baz is a work in progress that will move slow, but the ceiling is very high if everything comes together.
The trade is now complete as the Pirates receive starter Chris Archer, while the Rays receive Baz along with pitcher Tyler Glasnow and outfielder Austin Meadows.