Last Tuesday, Joe Musgrove was called from the bullpen to put a hold on a deteriorating situation in the Astros matchup against Toronto. Lance McCullers, who was so dominant in the month of July, left the game against one of the better lineups in the American League. Though down just a run at the time, throwing a rookie pitcher making his MLB debut against a scorching hot lineup isn't exactly what A.J. Hinch had in mind.
Though the Astros ended up falling to Toronto, it wasn't because of Musgrove. The right-hander, ranked as the seventh-best Astros prospect on MLB.com, kept the Astros in the game and defended Jeff Luhnow's decision to not trade him for proven major league talent with 4.1 dominant innings, including eight strikeouts. That mark tied a major league record for strikeouts by a relief pitcher in a major league debut, and set the stage for an important start today against Texas.
In this article, we'll take a look at Musgrove's pitch selections, outcomes and velocity against his minor league scouting reports. Through extensive scouting and showcases like the Futures Game, it's becoming increasingly easier to get a read on minor league prospects and what they bring to the major league table before they even reach it. However, Pitch F/X can show us precisely how Musgrove's stuff last week stacks up to what was advertised.
First, here's a piece of Musgrove's most recent report from MLB.com: