Player: Nick Nastrini
Position: Right-Handed Pitcher
Height: 6’3 Weight: 215 Age: 23 Bats/Throws: R/R Current Level: AAA-Charlotte
MLB.com Rank: 6th in White Sox System
Drafted: 4th Round, 2021 by Los Angeles Dodgers
Acquired: Traded from LAD on 7/28/23
Hometown: San Jose, CA
Nastrini was acquired as part of the return for Lance Lynn and Joe Kelly from Los Angeles at this year’s trade deadline. Since then, Nastrini has spent time in both Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte. He went 3-0 with a 4.22 ERA, 31 strikeouts and seven walks in 4 starts in Birmingham and has gone 0-2 with a 4.15 ERA, 14 strikeouts and seven in Charlotte.
Nastrini’s fastball is what got him drafted in the 4th round and ranking among the top ten prospects in the Dodgers system. The question has always been control. He’s been a starter throughout his minor league career and has begun to show better control. He also struck out opponents at a crazy high clip. He led the Dodgers system striking out 13 batters per nine-innings and batting average (.180) last season. He’s only 23-years-old so there’s still time to improve and solidify himself as a potential major-league starter.
His fastball sits 93-97 mph while his slider and curveball have both been effective secondary pitches. The changeup is improving, but not as effective as his breaking stuff.
While Nastrini has the potential to be a top-tier starting pitcher, his control remains a concern. He’s made a few adjustments that helped him make progress in reducing his walk rate, but the question remains whether he can consistently throw strikes. He could become a valuable rotation asset with average control and decent command, but his stuff suggests he could also excel as a reliever if needed.