The Diamondbacks have signed the second of their five draft selections in the 2020 Draft. According to MLB Pipeline’s Jim Callis, the team signed 5th round selection Brandon Pfaadt for $100K.
5th-rder Brandon Pfaadt signs w/@Dbacks— Jim Callis (@jimcallisMLB) June 30, 2020
for $100k (slot 149 value = $360,800). Best Bellarmine U. prospect since Todd Wellmeyer, RHP throws strikes w/three pitches, including heavy low-90s sinker & solid breaking ball, proved himself against top competition in Cape Lg @MLBDraft
Pfaadt ranked 240th on Baseball America’s Top 500 prospects in the draft thanks to a sinker, curveball, change-up combination. Pfaadt came from a Division-II program at Bellarmine University, but showed some promise in the summer of 2019 in the Cape Cod League that likely got him on scouts’ radar.
Pfaadt isn’t likely to join the D-backs big league camp, as it’s already as it’s maximum capacity of 60 players, so his first development steps as a pro will have to be an expanded instructional/fall league with a minor league season cancelled in 2020. His two likely paths to the majors will be as either a #5 starter or a middle reliever that eats up innings out of the bullpen. There is some concern about his ability to stick as a starter, as his stuff doesn’t hold deep into starts. That could be a conditioning issue, since Pfaadt has the ideal frame for a starter.
The $100K bonus saves the D-backs roughly $260K vs. the recommended slot bonus of $361K for the 149th pick. After signing 1st rounder Bryce Jarvis for $2.65M and Pfaadt, the organization has about $4.43M left to spend on CBA pick Slade Cecconi, 3rd rounder Liam Norris, and 4th rounder A.J. Vukovich. Even with a potential concern that both high schoolers may require a 7-figure signing bonus to lure out of their college commitments, the team has enough left in their pool to get the job done.