The Pittsburgh Pirates signed 17-year-old, right-handed pitcher Luis Escobar out of Colombia. He stands 6' 0", 175 pounds and was born on May 30, 1996. Escobar has been on their radar for a while now and recently showed strong improvements in his fastball velocity, leading the team to sign him. Due to his age, he was eligible to sign since last July 2nd, but the recent strong progress he has shown, makes him one of the more interesting players they have signed this year.
Escobar was originally a third baseman, converting to the mound last year when his coach realized his arm was his best asset and the switch would help him to gain the interest of scouts. Back in November, he was throwing his fastball in 87-90 MPH range, but he's now throwing 91-94 MPH. He also features a change-up and a curveball that has potential to be a good pitch, though he needs to work on the release.
Escobar hasn't reported to the Pirates Dominican facility yet, but will take part in the Dominican Republic...
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.