Last time on Pirates Prospect Daily, we discussed the Pirates’ number 36 overall pick in the MLB Draft, Thomas Harrington. Today we will discuss the current Single-A pitching prospect for the Pirates, right-handed pitcher Po-Yu Chen. The Pirates acquired Chen internationally on October 7th of, 2020, for $1.25 million, one of the most expensive bonuses in Pirates’ history.
On Tuesday afternoon, Chen was recently in Pirates’ news after it was announced that he had won the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week Honors for his start on July 16th against the Jupiter Hammerheads. During his start against the Miami Marlins Single-A squad, Chen pitched six shutout innings, walking one and striking out five.
According to FanGraphs, the Taiwanese pitching prospect was originally touted for his control, coming to the Pirates with a potential 60 grade. After a bad second half of 2021, Chen has seemed to calm things down on the mound. Currently, Chen has a 3.63 BB/9 which is still below average, but it’s much better than the 6.75 in 21.’
Chen has been under the radar as a Pirates prospect, but the 20-year-old is holding his own in Single-A to this point. Opponents are hitting .233 against him with an OPS of .650 and a slugging percentage of just .336. Chen currently has an excellent K/9 rate at 10.07 through 67.0 innings pitched; if he can harness the control he is known for, we could see a lot more Pitcher of the Week honors.