Arizona Fall League Update: Late Addition Bear Bellomy Earning Place on Peoria Roster
|Photo Credit: MiLB.com|
The Pittsburgh Pirates sent a very talented and intriguing set of prospects to the Arizona Fall League in 2021. Among them was 2020 first round pick Nick Gonzales, who has been on a tear as of late.
Also in Arizona is Roansy Conteras, acquired in the Jameson Taillon trade and was one of the breakout stars in not only the Pirates system, but in all of baseball. He dominated double-A Altoona before getting small taste in Indianapolis, eventually finishing the year by making his major league debut at PNC Park.
A late addition to the Peoria Javelinas roster, Bear Bellomy comes with maybe the least amount of fanfare when it comes to the Pirates' prospects in the AFL, but his early performance has made him the most interesting name.
While the likes of Gonzales and Carmen Mlodzinski were high draft picks, and Contreras and Canaan Smith-Njigba were acquired in a high-profile trade, Bellomy's entry into professional baseball is a far more simpler story.
Drafted in the 28th round as a college senior in 2019 out of Wright State, Bellomy didn't have a notable career before being selected. He didn't pitch much as a freshman and sophomore (7 2/3 innings combined) and posted a 5.10 career ERA.
He was drafted and signed immediately (for a reported $2,000), spending time in both Bristol and West Virginia in 2019. In 16 appearances (5 starts), Bellomy posted a 2.83 ERA, 1.26 WHIP and help opponents to an .263 average across 41 2/3 innings pitched.
With Bellomy in the AFL right now, I decided to go back and watch some of his appearances this past year. Mid 90s fastball, good curve. College senior in 2019, so 2020 was big because he now comes in a little older at each level. Maybe a relief option in future #LetsGoBucs pic.twitter.com/HYIOaIVg0S— Anthony Murphy (@__Murphy88) November 1, 2021
Spending all but one of his 35 outings in 2021 with the Greensboro Grasshoppers, Bellomy posted a 4.50 ERA, to go along with a 1.13 WHIP in 68 innings pitched. He saw a big jump in his strikeouts after focusing completely on being a reliever, punching out 85 batters for a 11.25 K/9.
Playing for Peoria this fall, Bellomy has made four appearances, allowing two runs on five hits, striking out four while walking three. He has posted a good WHIP (1.20) and has held hitters to just an .208 average.
So, what to make of Bellomy? He wasn't exactly the first name to come to mind when thinking of a replacement for Miguel Yajure, but here we are and he's pitching well out of the bullpen.
He's a tad older than most of his piers in Arizona, as was the case during his time in Greensboro, so he probably should have been performing this way. Still, with a mid-90s fastball, and big breaking ball he does remain an intriguing name to watch as a potential reliever at some point in Pittsburgh.
Bellomy wasn't nearly as highly touted as some of his teammates throughout the draft process. Of the pitchers with multiple appearances for Peoria this fall, Devin Sweet is the only player that Bellomy was drafted 'ahead' of (Sweet went undrafted).
There are a few names who slid to about where Bellomy was selected but some went as high as the first round (Mlodzinski and MacKenzie Gore).
It'll be a big leap from Greensboro to Altoona in 2022, but he's already showing that some of his stuff plays up against better competition.