Yesterday the Baltimore Orioles promoted left-handed pitching prospect Jayson Aquino to the major league roster. He had a trial with the Orioles back in April but we neglected to write him up at the time. Now that he’s back in the Show, let’s correct that oversight.
Aquino came into pro ball via the Colorado Rockies system, signed out of the Dominican Republic in 2009. Although very effective at the lower levels he was inconsistent after reaching full-season ball in 2013, thriving at times but also bedevilled with nagging injuries and command issues.
In 2015 he racked up the frequent flyer miles: he was traded to the Blue Jays in February, sold to the Pirates in May, sold to the Indians in July, claimed on waivers by the Cardinals in December, then sold to the Orioles in July 2016.
Lost amidst all the roster shuffling was the fact that he was actually pitching pretty well, posting a 3.28 ERA in 137 innings in 2015 and a 3.72 ERA in 128 innings in 2016. He appeared briefly in the majors with the Orioles last year and (of course) is back now.
Aquino was rated as a Grade C+ pre-season, outside the Top 20 Baltimore Orioles prospects but in the 21-25 range.
Listed at 6-1, 225, Aquino was born November 22nd, 1992. His fastball isn’t especially fast at 87-92 MPH but the pitch moves well and generates grounders. He relies heavily on his above-average change-up and will mix in mediocre-to-average sliders and curveballs. His control is good (he avoids walks) but his command within the zone can be spotty. When he’s on, he can make hitters look bad but he doesn’t have large margins for error.
Overall he profiles as a fifth starter/long reliever type.
Here’s some footage from his first MLB start last month.