SF Giants top right-handed pitching prospect has been on unbelievable run in Double-A

Oakland Athletics v San Francisco Giants
Oakland Athletics v San Francisco Giants / Lachlan Cunningham/GettyImages

While a lot of prospect attention has centered on Kyle Harrison or Carson Whisenhunt in 2023, Mason Black is deserving of a lot of recognition as well. Black is in the midst of a fantastic run in Double-A where he has not allowed a run over his past five starts.

SF Giants top right-handed pitching prospect has been on unbelievable run in Double-A

On June 2, the right-handed pitching prospect faced off against the Erie Seawolves. He yielded three earned runs with four strikeouts against one walk in four innings. The Richmond Flying Squirrels notched a 6-5 win thanks to Black for keeping the game close and to Andy Thomas for blasting a three-run homer.

It has been exactly one month since that game. Black has recorded five starts and has not allowed a run in any of those starts while being virtually unhittable. In that stretch, the 23-year-old has yielded eight hits against 29 strikeouts and only five walks. This includes a perfect start on Saturday where he did not allow a baserunner across five innings in a 4-1 win over the Reading Fightin Phils.

The Giants selected Black in the third round of the 2021 draft out of Leigh University in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. He has arguably been the Giants' best prospect from that draft class. Both Vaun Brown (10th round) and Landen Roupp (12th round) could make a case for that distinction as well.

Black has been solid since his pro career began last year. He posted a 3.21 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 10.9 K/9, and a 3.78 SO/W ratio across two levels last year. He earned an assignment to Double-A this year and has continued to put together good numbers, including a 3.66 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 11.3 K/9, and a 3.70 SO/W ratio in 15 starts for the Flying Squirrels.

The righty pitching prospect ranks as the No. 9 prospect in the Giants system according to MLB.Com. He features a mid-90's fastball with a slider and a changuep. The fastball has some late movement to the right side of the plate and the slider has a lot of horizontal movement to the left side of the plate.

The changeup is a bit of a work in progress, but Black gets a lot of swinging strikes with his fastball-slider combination. He commands all three of his pitches and limits walks at a healthy rate. He is a flyball-heavy pitcher, which leads to a modestly-high home run rate.

Given Black's recent stretch of play, it feels like he should be close to a promotion. The Giants have been aggressive with promotions in 2023 and Black along with Roupp and Wade Mekcler are giving them a lot of reasons to continue that trend.