Skenes showed last season why he was the best pitcher in the country as he finished the year with a 12-2 record and a 1.69 ERA. He struck out 209 hitters and only walked 20 as he led the Tigers to a National Championship. The biggest question facing all MLB teams heading into the draft was, “Would you take Skenes or Dylan Crews with the first pick of the draft?”
The Pirates went with Skenes, and the Nationals picked Crews with the second pick. Skenes was then sent to rookie ball where he made one appearance as he struck out one hitter in one inning. He was then called up to Single-A Bradenton where he pitched three innings over two starts. Then he was called up to Double-A Altoona. He pitched 2.2 innings for them before the Pirates had seen all they needed to see.
“We’re excited and encouraged by the positive things Paul has been able to accomplish in his short time in the Pirates organization,” Pirates general manager Ben Cherington said in a release. “He’s checked all of the boxes we aimed for him to check during the 2023 season. The goal now is to focus on a complete off-season in preparation for his first full professional year in 2024.”
Skenes’ 2023 season is over, but it was a season to remember.