It’s never a bad thing to get a Pedro Martinez comp when you’re a pitching prospect, especially in the Red Sox organization.
Now, we’re not saying — no one is saying — Boston prospect Brayan Bello is the next Pedro. However, legendary baseball insider Peter Gammons shared a very interesting tidbit Tuesday about the young hurler.
Again, maybe not going to turn into Pedro, but that name certainly jumps off the page when you read it.
As for Bello, he’s a fascinating prospect. Boston signed the 22-year-old as an international free agent in 2017. Since then, he’s kind of bounced around the minors, pitching at Salem and Greenville upon getting the promotion to the States. He’s in Salem to start the season, and the early returns are impressive. Bello has won both of his starts, allowing just two runs in 11 1/3 innings while striking out 13, including a 10-punchout performance. Even better? Just three walks so far.
Tracking the progression of any minor leaguer is more difficult than ever after the entire 2020 MiLB season was wiped out due to COVID-19. In 2019, Bello struggled, going 5-10 with a 5.43 ERA with Greenville in the South Atlantic League. He got his head handed to him in May of that season, allowing an obscene 32 earned runs in 19 innings, which might have messed with the numbers a little.
The smarter people, the ones who have made it either their profession or passion to monitor prospects, also have taken notice of the righty.
For now, Bello is the No. 24 prospect on SoxProspects.com.
“Has the early makings of a three-pitch mix that makes him a potential No. 4 or 5 starter,” they wrote in his scouting report. “Has a lot of development remaining and a wide variation of potential outcomes.”
It’s a long way from being Pedro Martinez, even with a Pedro-esque changeup. However, there’s plenty of value in a back-end starter, and the little-known Bello reaching that point should be considered a developmental win, especially for a Boston organization that has struggled to develop good starting pitching.