See Why Joely Rodriguez Was Added to the 40-Man Roster (Video)

Joely Rodriguez has some nice stuff for a left-hander. He throws his fastball in the 91-94 MPH range, and hit 96 MPH last year. His changeup has shown some improvements, with late, sharp tailing action. His slider has some good break, and is a weapon to shut down left-handers. Rodriguez has good movement on all of his pitches, as seen in the video. The Pirates added him to the 40-man roster this off-season to protect him from the Rule 5 draft, mostly due to his overall package as a left-hander with a good arsenal. He should start the 2014 season in Altoona, with a shot at Indianapolis by the end of the year, and possibly a September callup.

Rodriguez was our number 15 prospect, and you can read our scouting report on him here.

Author: Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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  • rburgh

    Looks like his fastball has a lot of tail on it.

  • Silt

    and pretty consistent with keeping the ball down in the zone too.

  • emjayinTN

    I agree with both of the previous comments, but does he tip off his pitches? That left hand comes out from behind his hip and with my tired, old eyes it looked like he has different grips for each pitch, and our view is possibly 10 feet or more behind the Catcher. I went back and watched Volquez and Cole, and could not see any part of the grip because they work at hiding the ball in their glove or behind their hip until release. Is it possible a RH hitter with MLB-hitter eyes standing in front of the Catcher could possibly get a tell?

  • wvwc9092

    Hopefully there is a slide step in his future

  • honus1

    Like most starting lefties, his upside is tied to the improvement of his changeup.

  • Sandoz

    I like his delivery, free and easy. Not a whole lot of effort.

  • Bruce Humbert

    After reading Tim’s book I had him as a ST sleeper – someone who might be useful towards the end of the year – if he makes another improvement this year like last he could jump ahead of Kingham and Glasnow – not saying he will – but that is the fun of sleepers

  • piraddict

    Looks like from his release point that he’ll be tough on LH batters.