Paul Skenes Jul 18, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Paul Skenes, the Pirates first pick and overall number one pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, throws in the outfield before the game against the Cleveland Guardians at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Paul Skenes broke out the rest of his pitching arsenal Tuesday night.

The scouting reports were absolutely right — the No. 1 overall MLB Draft pick has more than just a triple-digit fastball.

The Pittsburgh Pirates prospect, playing for the Bradenton Marauders in his Single-A debut, wowed fans in just one inning of work against Detroit Tigers minor leaguers. In his first pro appearance Thursday, Skenes brought the fastball, throwing 10 of his 11 pitches in the 99-101 mph range.

This time, Skenes showed some of his other stuff, notably a sinker and slider. He got four swings and misses on his 16 pitches, resulting in two strikeouts. He gave up one hit, a single, in that scoreless inning.

Unlike his first pro appearance, only one pitch hit 100 mph.

“It’s not going to be 101 every outing,” Skenes said (via “The thing I look for is just maintaining the velocity. … I think that’s more telling about where my body is, my strength and conditioning.

“If you have a well-spotted fastball at 96 [mph] or whatever, it’s going to work too. Velocity, it’s a tool, it helps you get away with some stuff. It’s a really good tool to have, but it’s not the end-all, be-all by any means, because a well-executed fastball at whatever velocity is the best pitch in baseball, I think.”

The short but sweet outing from Skenes came in only his second appearance since he pitched the LSU Tigers to the College World Series championship. The Pirates are taking it easy with the No. 3 overall prospect in baseball.

Fans definitely liked what they saw.

[Rob Friedman]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.