The Los Angeles Dodgers announced on Thursday that the team’s top prospect, left handed pitcher Julio Urias, is getting the call to the Major Leagues.
The Dodgers are expected to purchase on Friday the contract of LHP Julio Urias, who is scheduled to make his MLB debut Friday in New York.
— Los Angeles Dodgers (@Dodgers) May 26, 2016
Urias, 19, will make his Major League debut on Friday, in New York, against the Mets. Alex Wood was the scheduled starter for Friday’s game, but he has been scratched with left triceps soreness, the Dodgers announced. This clears the way for Urias to make the start.
Urias is not just the Dodgers top prospect, but one of the top prospects in all of baseball. MLB.com has Urias rated as the No. 2 prospect on the MLB Top 100 prospects list. While Urias is just 19, Dodgers fans have been anticipating his debut. There had been some talk as to whether Urias would eventually join the Dodgers out of the bullpen, but for his debut he’ll be making a start. The Dodgers made a point to say that Wood is expected to make his next start in the rotation, though, so he isn’t expected to be out long.
This raises some additional intrigue around Urias. He could just be making a spot start, but it seems a bit far fetched that he’d make a spot start and then be sent back to the Minors. Perhaps Urias could find himself in the bullpen at some point, but if he impresses, he absolutely has the talent to be able to stick in the rotation.
As Jon Morosi of MLB.com points out, Urias will become the first player at 19 years old to start an MLB game since Seattle Mariners ace Felix Hernandez did so in 2005. Urias will also be the first 19 year-old to pitch for the Dodgers since Fernando Valenzuela in 1980.
When Urias was just 17 years-old in 2014, he had already made his way to High-A. By 18 years-old in 2015, he rose through Double-A, and got a shot at Triple-A as well. He began the 2016 season in Triple-A, going 4-1 in 7 starts. His ERA was just 1.10, and his WHIP was an amazing 0.780.
The Dodgers have built up an impressive stable of prospects, and Urias is the headliner. On Friday against the Mets, he’ll get his first chance to pitch in the Major Leagues.