Nestor Cortes, 22, pitched at three different levels including the Florida State League, Eastern League and the International League in 2017. He spent most of the season in Double-A with the Thunder where he was 5-0 with a 2.60 ERA over 18 games where he struck out 45 in 52 innings. In Triple-A he went 2-4 with a 1.49 ERA and 57 strikeouts in 48 1/3 innings.
Between all three levels, Cortes ended the season with a 7-4 record and a 2.06 ERA and 105 strikeouts in 104 2/3 innings pitched. This winter he is pitching in the Dominican Republic for Estrellas Orientales. On November 4 he threw six hitless innings and overall has a 2-1 record with a 1.25 ERA in 21 2/3 innings pitched.
Cortes does not throw particularly hard. He has a fastball that is anywhere between the high-80s and low-90s and topping out at 93 miles per hour. He locates his fastball well compliments it with a changeup that sits between 75-70 miles per hour, a curveball in the low-mid-70s and a slider that is in the high-70s. He works mostly down in the zone and moves it well to either side to keep hitters off balance and get outs.