Wonder what Pedro Martinez looked like when he was young? Check out fellow Dominican Luis Severino, a 20-year-old with a future as bright as the Broadway lights and the Yankees’ No. 1 prospect.
Severino, who won’t turn 21 until Feb. 20, worked his way from Charleston to Trenton in 2014, compiling a 6-5, 2.46 mark in 24 appearances and 113.1 innings, His strikeout/walk ratio was an eye-popping 127-27.
“One thing I am able to do,’’ said the native of Sabana Del Mar, D.R., “is throw the ball where I want to.’’
His control is marvelous, featuring a fastball that sits in the 94-97 range, but has reached 99 in spots. As did Martinez for several years, he mixes that with a change-up with late fade, which baffles hitters from both sides of the plate.
Severino can fall in love with his change, which is a pitch that has proven somewhat unfair to minor-league hitters. His third pitch, a mid-80s curve, is passable but still not fully developed.
In three minor-league seasons and 48 appearances (46 starts), the 6-foot, 195-pound Severino has struck out 225 batters and walked just 54. He is the real deal, having allowed just six home runs in 221.2 minor-league innings.
“No doubt Luis’ stuff can play in the majors, and it will sooner rather than later,’’ said 2014 Trenton pitching coach Tommy Phelps, who will handle the same duties at Class-A Advanced Tampa in 2015.
The Yankees were pleased to see him go over 100 innings last summer and held him out for two weeks with a minor oblique strain.
There is a chance Severino will pitch in Yankee Stadium late in the 2015 season. Out of spring training, he could make a few starts at Trenton, but also could be fast-tracked to open the season.
This one, people, you do not consider trading. He will make his big-league debut with the Yankees.