Pittsburgh Pirates rookie pitcher Paul Skenes, who was the No. 1 overall pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, made his Spring Training debut against the Baltimore Orioles yesterday.

The rookie flame thrower was impressive. Skenes threw only 10 pitches, but hit 100+ mph on the radar gun not just once, not twice, but four times.

Skenes threw strikes on six of 10 pitches, and retired three top-two draft picks in the Orioles talented batting order.

Skenes faced Orioles shortstop prospect Jackson Holliday and retired him on a grounder to second base in a spring training matchup of the top overall picks in the past two MLB amateur drafts.

Skenes went 13-2 with a 1.69 ERA and 209 strikeouts in 2023 while leading LSU to the NCAA title. He agreed to a $9.2 million signing bonus with the Pirates and pitched in five games with Low-A Bradenton and Double-A Altoona last season.

Pirates pitcher Paul Skenes. Photo courtesy of triblive.com


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