The first pitcher on the top 30 prospects list for the Baltimore Orioles is Luis Gonzalez who comes in at number 28. If you missed yesterday’s profile on the number 29 prospect Ademir Rifaela click here to check it out.
Luis is a 26 year old left handed pitcher out of the Dominican Republic. He was originally signed as an international free agent by the Philadelphia Phillies in 2010. The Orioles signed him as a minor league free agent in 2013 after being released by the Phils in 2012.
Gonzalez’s three seasons in the Phillies organization was spent mostly as a starter. During that time Gonzalez carried an ERA of 4.85 and a record of 6-8 over 130 innings.
Gonzalez’s first assignment with the Orioles was in the Dominican Summer League in 2013. He appeared in nine games pitching 13.1 innings only giving up two runs on 10 hits and recording 23 strikeouts.
He then struggled the next two years with the Delmarva Shorebirds and Frederick Keys. While with Delmarva, he made 17 appearances including 16 starts. He had a 6-4 record with a 4.83 ERA over 76.1 innings.
Those numbers were good enough to earn a promotion next season to Advanced A Frederick, but Luis had rough season. He appeared in 26 games, starting all but two, and carried a 6.88 ERA giving up 13 home runs in 117.2 innings.
Gonzales transitioned into a relief role during an injury shortened 2016 season. He showed promise out of the back end of the bullpen, appearing in 13 games and finishing eight earning two saves. In 31.2 innings of work he had a 3.13 ERA and a whip of .916 while striking out 43 batters.
His best season came last year, his third in Frederick. He appeared in 36 games all out of the bullpen earning five saves. Across 62 innings of work, he held a 2.47 ERA striking out 75 and oly giving up three home runs.
Gonzales also appeared in nine games last season while in the Arizona Fall League giving up no runs and five hits in 9.2 innings.
Gonzalez’s velocity can fluctuate at times, but when he’s at his best he’ll sit around 92-93 mph with arm-side run and bump 94-95. His upper-80s slider and solid changeup fuels his ability to produce reverse splits, as right-handed hitters batted just .130 against Gonzalez in 2017 compared to lefties’ .241 mark. He misses bats with all three pitches, helping him to compensate for fringy command. – MLB.com