21-Year-Old Flamethrower Paul Skenes, Drafted Just Last Year, Gets Called Up To Majors Insanely Quick


Robert McGreevy Contributor
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The Pittsburgh Pirates are calling up 21-year-old flamethrowing pitcher Paul Skenes just 10 months after drafting him with the first overall pick, the team announced in a Wednesday tweet.

The Pirates selected Skenes with the first overall pick of the 2023 draft. Since then he’s been lighting up the minor leagues with his electric fastball. He regularly topped 100 miles per hour on the pitch, as 98 of the 422 pitches he threw this season in the minors topped the century mark, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He averaged a cool 99.9 miles per hour on the pitch, according to the outlet.

Skenes’ quick call-up, while not unprecedented, is super rare. If he gets the official call-up on Friday, that would mark 306 days since the Pirates drafted him. Only 22 players in MLB history have ascended more quickly than that, according to Baseball America. (RELATED: Budding MLB Superstar Saves Game With Heroic Home Run Robbery)

While it may be a quick call, it’s certainly not undeserving. Skenes has been tearing up the minors. He’d already reached number three on the MLB’s top 100 prospects list, and number one amongst pitchers. The two guys above him, Jackson Chourio and Jackson Holliday, had already received their call-ups (though Holliday has already been sent back to the minors.)

His AAA numbers are insane. In 27.1 innings pitched he’d only given up three earned runs, good for a 0.99 earned run average. He added 45 strikeouts and an insane 5.63 strikeouts-to-walks ratio.

The kid is poised to take the league by storm. And paired with current Pirates ace Jared Jones, Pittsburgh just crafted one of the deadliest young one-two punches in the league. I’m friggin amped to see what he can do.