Guardians will select Hunter Gaddis

Guardians will select right gadis hunter to make his major league debut tomorrow, manager Terry Francona told reporters (including Ryan Lewis of the Akron Beacon-Journal). kirk mcarty has been optioned to Triple-A Columbus to clear an active roster spot, while the team will announce the corresponding 40-man roster move tomorrow.

The 24-year-old Gaddis was Cleveland’s fifth-round pick out of Georgia State in 2019. The 6’6″ right-hander has posted incredible strikeout numbers practically since the day he entered the pro ranks. He has struck out 32.6% of opposing hitters throughout his minor league career, including a nearly identical clip between Double-A Akron and Columbus this season. Most of his work has come in Akron, where he has pitched a 4.24 ERA in 76 1/3 innings with a 32.7% strikeout rate and a decent 8.3% walk percentage. He was promoted to Triple-A a couple of weeks ago and made only two starts there before earning his first major league appearance.

Baseball America recently ranked Gaddis as the 19th-ranked prospect in a strong Guardians farm system. The middle cited his combination of four pitches, which includes a low-to-mid 90s fastball and a couple of quality secondary offerings on his slider and changeup. Overall, he has also shown solid control throughout his time in the minors, though his incredibly low ground-ball rates have raised some home run concerns.

Gaddis would have been eligible for the Rule 5 draft this offseason had he not been added to the 40-man roster. Cleveland will give him a roster spot a few months early and put him right into the fire, starting a game against the Astros while the Guards are just one game behind the Twins in the AL Central. With Aaron Civale Beginning a rehab assignment in Columbus tomorrow, it’s possible that Gaddis’ initial stint will consist of just a punctual start. However, the fact that he is now in the 40-man solidly cements him as a viable rotation depth for the Major League club down the stretch.

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