HomeOther Philly SportsPhiladelphia Phillies ink Ricardo Pinto to minor league contract

Philadelphia Phillies ink Ricardo Pinto to minor league contract

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The Phillies have signed right-hander Ricardo Pinto to a minor league deal, according to Oscar Budejan (X link). The deal includes an invite to big league Spring Training.

Pinto, 30, began his professional career in the Phillies organization back in 2012 and eventually made his big league debut for the club during the 2017 season. Pinto’s first stint in the majors did not go well as he struggled to a 7.89 ERA in 29 2/3 innings of work, striking out just 17% of batters while walking 11.6%. Pinto was then dealt to the White Sox just before the start of the 2018 season, though he did not make a major league appearance for the club.

Pinto eventually caught on with the Rays and returned to the big leagues late in the 2019 season after posting a decent 4.13 ERA in 104 2/3 innings of work for the club at the Triple-A level, though he was shelled for four runs on four hits and two walks in 2 1/3 innings for Tampa before the Rays designated him for assignment. After a brief stint in the Giants organization, Pinto headed overseas for the 2020 season to pitch in the Korea Baseball Organization. In the KBO, Pinto was used as a starter for the first time since 2016, when he was still at the Double-A level. While he struggled badly to a 6.17 ERA in his 30 starts overseas, he nonetheless found a spot in the Tigers organization.

The right-hander initially worked as a starter for the Tigers, pitching to a 4.29 ERA over 123 2/3 innings of work split between the Double- and Triple-A levels, but converted back to relief work in his second season with the Tigers. The 2022 campaign saw Pinto pitch fairly well out of the bullpen in Triple-A, with a 3.58 ERA and a 27.7% strikeout rate in 32 1/3 frames across 20 appearances. That’s his most recent stateside work, though Pinto has since pitched in Taiwan’s Chinese Professional Baseball League, the Mexican League, and the Venezuelan Winter League.

In returning to affiliated ball, Pinto joins a Phillies organization that appears mostly set in the bullpen entering Spring Training. Nonetheless, Pinto will have the opportunity to establish himself in camp alongside fellow non-roster invitees like Ryan Burr and Nick Snyder as well as depth options currently on the club’s 40-man roster such as Michael Rucker and Kaleb Ort. Any of those arms could find themselves on the Opening Day roster in the event of an injury, or perhaps if they manage to outperform an arm such as right-hander Connor Brogdon during camp.

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