LUIS SANZ
RIGHT HANDED PITCHER
Born: November 19, 1987
Height: 6’1″
Weight: 173
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Signed: Int’l Free Agent, 2005 (Tigers)
How Acquired: Minor League Free Agent
Country: Venezuela
Agent:
N/A

WTM’S PIRATE PLAYER PROFILES

Sanz signed with Detroit out of Venezuela.  He throws in the upper-80s to low-90s, with a curve and a fringy change.  He’s never been regarded as a prospect and made his way up very slowly, sticking in full season ball only at age 24.  He’s generally had mediocre walk and K rates, and is not a groundball pitcher.  The Pirates signed him to a minor league deal for 2013.

2006
VSL:  2-3-5, 5.33 ERA, 1.70 WHIP, 27.0 IP, 4.0 BB/9, 5.0 K/9

Sanz pitched mainly as a closer in his debut season and didn’t get very good results.

2007
VSL:  6-3-0, 3.58 ERA, 1.38 WHIP, 73.0 IP, 3.9 BB/9, 5.1 K/9

The Tigers moved Sanz to their VSL rotation and he pitched better, although still with a low K rate.

2008
R:  5-3-0, 3.66 ERA, 1.16 WHIP, 51.2 IP, 3.3 BB/9, 8.4 K/9

Sanz continued to improve as a starter in rookie ball, with solid walk and K rates.

2009
A-:  5-4-0, 3.27 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 82.2 IP, 3.8 BB/9, 6.6 K/9
A:  0-1-0, 8.64 ERA, 1.74 WHIP, 16.2 IP, 4.3 BB/9, 5.4 K/9

Sanz pitched mostly as a starter in short season ball and regressed a little, mainly in the for of a low K rate.  He struggled in limited action out of the bullpen in low A.

2010
A-:  3-0-0, 0.56 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 16.0 IP, 3.9 BB/9, 8.4 K/9
A:  4-7-0, 5.38 ERA, 1.56 WHIP, 87.0 IP, 4.4 BB/9, 6.4 K/9

Sanz again split his time between short season ball and low A, this time mostly the latter, where he served as a swing man.  He didn’t get good results, with poor walk and K rates.

2011
A-:  6-4-0, 2.81 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 83.1 IP, 2.5 BB/9, 8.2 K/9
A+:  0-0-0, 4.50 ERA, 1.33 WHIP, 6.0 IP, 3.0 BB/9, 4.5 K/9

The Tigers sent Sanz back down to short season ball.  He pitched very well in 14 starts, but that’s hardly a sign of progress considering that it was his sixth professional season.  He made one start in high A.

2012
A:  1-0-0, 0.00 ERA, 0.94 WHIP, 5.1 IP, 3.4 BB/9, 6.8 K/9
A+:  11-3-0, 3.46 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 114.1 IP, 3.1 BB/9, 7.2 K/9

Sanz finally spent a year in high A and had a good season, although the pitcher-friendly environs of the Florida State League probably helped.  He made 16 starts and seven relief appearances.  His K rate was below the league average of 7.4.

2013
AA:  3-5-16, 4.94 ERA, 1.55 WHIP, 62.0 IP, 5.1 BB/9, 8.9 K/9

The Pirates used Sanz primarily as Altoona’s closer, although he did start three games.  The three starts, in which he had an ERA of 10.38, inflated his ERA.  It was 4.05 as a reliever, although that’s still not good.  He wasn’t unusually hard to hit and had control problems.  He also had a mild gopher ball problem, allowing eight.

Sanz will be a free agent after the season.  He didn’t pitch well for Altoona, so it’s hard to see a reason for the Pirates to try to re-sign him.

STATS
Baseball Reference–Minors
Fangraphs
MiLB.com
CONTRACT INFORMATION
2013: Minor league contract
PLAYER INFORMATION
Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2006
MLB Debut: N/A
MiLB FA Eligible: 2013
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: N/A
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
TRANSACTIONS
December 12, 2005: Signed as an international free agent by the Detroit Tigers.
November 3, 2012: Became a free agent.
November 21, 2012: Signed as a minor league free agent by the Pittsburgh Pirates.