SF Giants: Pair of prospects “turning heads” this preseason

SF Giants hat in the dugout. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
SF Giants hat in the dugout. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /
SF Giants, Luis Matos, Kyle Harrison
SF Giants prospects Kyle Harrison and Luis Matos made an impression this spring. (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images) /

SF Giants fans received some more exciting news about two of the organization’s quickest rising prospects on the week of minor-league Opening Day. In an article over at Baseball America (subscription required) by Josh Norris, the associate editor wrote about 28 prospects around professional baseball that had impressed evaluators this spring training. He included SF Giants outfielder prospect Luis Matos and starting pitching prospect Kyle Harrison on the list.

SF Giants prospects Kyle Harrison and Luis Matos were “turning heads” this spring training.

Around the Foghorn’s preseason prospect rankings listed Harrison and Matos as the fifth and second-best prospects in the organization. However, most other outlets ranked both players lower in the system’s top ten. Regardless, both teenagers have already helped their stock in 2021. Both Matos and Harrison have begun the minor-league season assigned to the San Jose Giants.

The Giants drafted Harrison in the third round of last year’s draft but signed him away from a commitment to UCLA with a signing bonus equivalent to the cost of a late first-round pick. After working primarily in the low-90s as an amateur, the De La Salle High School alum almost immediately began showing premium velocity. According to Norris, those gains have carried over to this season, “The lefthander’s fastball has sat in the mid 90s this spring and bumped as high as 98 mph with riding life through the strike zone.” He added that Harrison flashed a plus slider as well, quickly showing scouts a strong two-pitch mix.

Matos has been turning heads for some time with an exceptional combination of athleticism and bat speed. In his first official spring training stateside, the Venezuelan impressed several pro evaluators. Norris noted that “There are some rough edges to polish,” but added that he’s already made some improvements, showing “more adjustability in his whippy, explosive swing this spring.”

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With another minor-league season underway, fans are looking for the next stars in SF Giants uniforms. While many will want to see top prospects perform in official games, it’s fantastic news for the organization that players like Luis Matos and Kyle Harrison impressed evaluators this preseason.