The SF Giants placed top reliever prospect Camilo Doval onto their taxi squad on Friday. The 28th best prospect in the system is now just a step away from his big-league debut.
To close the season, the SF Giants will have to play their final 13 games in just 12 days. In the midst of a tight playoff race, manager Gabe Kapler is going to want fresh arms to turn to. It looks like one exciting young arm could be on the way. The team placed righthanded pitching prospect Camilo Doval on the taxi-squad.
The taxi-squad is a relatively unfamiliar roster maneuver to most fans. Members of the taxi-squad travel with the big-league club, but are not on the active roster. However, in the event of an injury or roster move, they’re obviously in a prime position to get the call.
In Around the Foghorn’s SF Giants prospect rankings, Doval ranked as the 28th best prospect in the organization and as the highest-ranked reliever on the list. While the 23-year old has never pitched above High-A, a 2020 big-league debut has seemed like a possibility.
SF Giants Prospect Camilo Doval Scouting Report
While you can read a full scouting report in the prospect rankings piece, here are three of the more valuable paragraphs from the write-up:
"Doval has legitimate closer upside. He works out of a clunky three-quarters delivery. The motion adds deception but makes it difficult to replicate. There might not be a pitcher in baseball with a wider range of performances.At his best, Doval frisbees in a high 90s four-seamer that has registered 2700 RPM and a cutter with similar velocity and strong horizontal movement. In other outings, his fastball will barely get out of the low-90s. His slider flashes as an average pitch, but without control of any pitch, it’s hard to take advantage of.His peculiar arm-angle should enable him to be tough on righthanded batters even if his velocity can never maintain premium velocity, but that’s obviously a far cry from what you’re hoping to get out of a legitimate closer prospect."
One thing understated in his writeup is the potential for Doval’s slider to become a plus-pitch as well. While it has been even more erratic than his fastball, his breaking ball (like every pitch in his repertoire) has recorded elite spin-rates. With that said, Giants fans should keep their expectations tempered.
Doval has always racked up strikeouts, but, even in the lower-minors, showed such erratic velocity and control that it’s hard to envision him stepping into a high-leverage role. He’d still immediately have some of the most exciting stuff in the Giants pen.
Obviously, without a minor-league season, Camilo Doval could have made huge strides this offseason and during the past couple of months at Sacramento. If he has, the SF Giants closer of the future could be debuting over the coming days.