After a short stint in Florida, Thomas Harrington is coming home.
The 2022 Big South Conference Pitcher of the Year and 36th overall pick in that summer’s Major League Baseball Draft will pitch for the Pittsburgh Pirates’ High-A affiliate, the Greensboro Grasshoppers, the club announced on June 1.
Harrington — the 12th-ranked prospect in the Pirates’ farm system — has been nothing short of impressive in his eight games for the rookie affiliate in Bradenton, Florida. For the Marauders, Harrington posted a 4-1 record, a 2.77 ERA and struck out 40 batters in 39 innings pitched (his strikeouts topped his hits allowed, and he walked just 12 batters).
— Pittsburgh Pirates Player Development (@PGHplayerDev) June 1, 2023
Numbers aside, Harrington has impressed Pirates scouts with his consistency. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Harrington has “added some muscle” to his frame, and “has adopted the sweeper that’s become all the rave. He already had an above-average changeup in his arsenal, but Harrington’s newest off-speed offering is one that’s been an excellent pitch for him in its infancy.”
The new pitch has Pirates fans excited:
“I don’t think the Pirates know I started throwing it in the offseason."
Thomas Harrington thought he was going to be a physical therapist. Instead, he became one of the Pirates' top prospects, partly because of sliders like this. Here's where it came fromhttps://t.co/HKR9xPhdWu pic.twitter.com/FkJTkdLgiE
— Alex Stumpf (@AlexJStumpf) May 16, 2023
Fans of the former Campbell University and Southern Lee High School star will have plenty of chances to see him perform just an hour or two from home in the coming month. While the team hasn’t released starters for the next few games, the Grasshoppers will begin a six-game homestand against Wilmington June 6-11. They’ll play six at Greenville the following week and host Winston-Salem June 20-25.
Harrington was the second Campbell Camel taken in last summer’s draft behind Zach Neto, the first rookie from that class to be called up to the big leagues this season. For the Los Angeles Angels, Neto has become the starting shortstop, hitting .245 with 3 home runs and 18 RBI and displaying a stellar glove in the field.