Rizzo Off to Fast Winter League Start

Venezuelan Righty Unscored Upon Through Four Games

By: Marcus Young | MillerParkProspects.com

With fall and winter leagues swinging into action, one player opening some eyes early on has been 22-year-old right-handed pitcher Gian Rizzo, who has gone unscored upon through his first four winter league outings in Venezuela.

In five innings of work for Aguilas de Zulia, Rizzo has allowed just three hits, striking out seven while holding opposing hitters to a .176 batting average.

Rizzo, who was signed by Milwaukee out of Maracaibo, Venezuela in March of 2011, spent the 2015 season at Class-A Wisconsin, where he made 36 relief appearances for the Timber Rattlers, going 0-3 with a 3.09 earned run average.

A command pitcher who seems likely to open 2016 in the Brevard County bullpen, Rizzo works off a low 90’s fastball that he combines with a changeup and a big, looping curveball. He issued just seven walks in 55.1 regular season innings and has allowed just two free passes thus far in winter ball.


Fall/Winter League Notes

– Infielder Yadiel Rivera is batting .462 through his first three Arizona Fall league games with the Surprise Saguaros, going 6-for-13 with a double and a triple. He went 3-for-6 against Mesa on October 16th, knocking in four runs

– Newly acquired right-hander Junior Guerra has been a workhorse for Tiburones de La Guairá this far, going 17.1 innings in three Venezuelan Winter League starts. The 30-year-old former Chicago White Sox pitcher sports a 2.08 earned run average with 22 strikeouts and just two walks.

– Infielder Hernan Perez is batting an even .300 through his first eight games in Venezuela. Playing third base for Tigres de Aragua, Perez racked up 9 hits in his first 30 at bats, including three doubles and a triple.

– Left-handed pitcher Brent Suter, a teammate of Perez with Tigres de Aragua, has made a pair of starts, going 1-0 with a 2.00 earned run average in nine innings of work, including five scoreless frames in his last outing on October 15th.

– A late addition to the Surprise Saguaros taxi squad, utility man Nathan Orf has made the most of his limited opportunities in the Arizona Fall League, hitting .385 with two walks through his first three Arizona Fall League contests.


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