One of the few under the radar moves the Cubs made this off-season was signing RHP Andury Acevedo in mid-November. Baseball America is high enough on Acevedo to rank him as the 29th best prospect in the Cubs’ system.
Acevedo was a minor league free agent the Cubs scooped up and signed to a Major League deal just two days prior to the deadline to add players to the 40-man roster to protect them the Rule 5 Draft. Acevedo spent the first six years of his pro career in the Pirates system. Andury was a position player, seeing time at all four spots in the infield and right field.
Andury Acevedo pitched in three levels of the Yankees system last year, advancing to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre where he posted a 1-2 record in 10 games with a 2.31 ERA and 1.97 WHIP. Acevedo was 3-4 in 41 combined games, all in relief, last season with a 2.59 ERA and 1.25 WHIP. In 59 innings for High-A Tampa, Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes Barre, Acevedo allowed 22 runs, 17 earned, on 53 hits with 21 walks and 49 strikeouts.
Acevedo is 25 years old, 6-foot-4, 235 pounds and has a big arm.
Acevedo’s fastball sits in the 95-97 mph range and has touched 98 mph on the gun. According to Baseball America, Acevedo “pitches aggressively off his fastball from a low slot and gets swings and misses thanks to its sinking life.” His best secondary offering is a 92 mph hard cutter. With reduced velocity his cutter takes on the shape of a slider. Acevedo also features a changeup that he rare throws.
Acevedo finished last season at the Triple-A level and has not played in the majors yet. Acevedo has three minor league options. Chances are very good that he spends the upcoming season on an optional assignment as he continues his development with the Iowa Cubs. He attended the Cubs Convention and participated in the caravan last month. Acevedo will be in big league camp next week when pitchers and catchers report to Mesa.
Andury Acevedo is another power arm at the upper levels of the system that will be just a call away from being an option for Joe Maddon in the back of his bullpen.