According to Matt Eddy from Baseball America, the Pittsburgh Pirates have signed right-handed pitcher Jake Thompson. The 25-year-old was a 2nd round draft pick of the Tampa Bay Rays in 2010 and he made it as high at AAA in their system.
Thompson has pitched as both a starter and reliever in the minors, throwing a total of 490.2 innings. He has a 3.76 ERA, a 1.41 WHIP and a 175:330 BB/SO ratio. He was hitting 92-95 MPH with his fastball when he was drafted, and his second best pitch was his change-up. Reports said that his curve needed work. Out of college, Baseball America called him a likely bullpen arm. They had him ranked 10th in the Rays’ organization after the draft, but he fell to 30th the next year and never ranked top 30 again.
Thompson pitched winter ball in Venezuela this past off-season, but has not pitched this year. He was injured right before the season started and then got released by the Rays two weeks ago when he came off the disabled list. Thompson has been assigned to Indianapolis.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.
John: What is missing here? How do the Pirates get this kid who has excellent overall stats through the minors, has been clocked at 95/96 at times, and has a Slider that some scouts deemed a 60 and others a 70 on a 20-80 scale? And, only in his age 21 season. Something wrong with this picture.
I wish it was the other Jake Thompson who is in the Texas org.
Sounds like a batting practice pitcher.
Sounds like an ideal candidate for reformation by the Pirates’ pitching brain trust! I am very impressed with how relentless the Pirates are in the pursuit of additional talent. They never seem content to leave “well enough alone”.