The Cleveland Indians have selected RHP Daniel Espino out of Georgia Premier Academy in Statesboro, Georgia. Espino has the top rated fastball in the draft, but fell due to height concerns.
MLB Pipeline had him listed as the 23rd ranked prospect in the 2019 MLB Draft, so the Indians appear to have gotten some decent value. Espino originally hails from Panama and he currently has a commitment to LSU.
Daniel Espino, upper 90s FB/mid-80s slider (from last night. 11Ks in 4 innings).— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) March 9, 2019
There are HS kids who have to try to hit this.
Full video of his outing here: https://t.co/BO3n4rfapo pic.twitter.com/ufxU7jVr6c
Here’s what Trevor Bauer had to say about him live on the MLB Network immediately after Espino was drafted:
“Man does this kid have electric stuff. Already touched triple digits with his fastball. Reminds me a lot of Tyler Glasnow.”s.
MLBPipeline gave the following grades for Espino’s pitches:
More from Pipeline:
Espino has developed into the hardest thrower in the ‘19 prep class. He repeatedly reached the upper 90s on the showcase circuit last summer and broke Hunter Greene’s Under Armour All-America Game record with a fastball clocked at 99 mph.
Espino usually works at 94-97 mph and has reached triple digits with his fastball. He can overpower hitters with sheer velocity, gets good riding action on his four-seamer and can show heavy sink on a two-seamer. Opponents can’t afford to sit on his heater because he has a pair of power breaking pitches, with his sharp low-80s slider currently grading better than his upper-70s curveball with good depth.
Espino also has been compared to Indians first round compensation pick Ethan Hankins from 2018. Watching Espino and Hankins tear up the minor leagues could be extremely fun over the new few year