D-backs call up No. 18 prospect RHP Yoan Lopez from Double-A Jackson

Sep 3, 2018, 1:14 PM | Updated: 10:31 pm
Highly-touted Cuban prospect Yoan Lopez has big league stuff. Photo by Stephen DeLorenzo...
Highly-touted Cuban prospect Yoan Lopez has big league stuff. Photo by Stephen DeLorenzo

PHOENIX – The Diamondbacks selected Monday the contract of No. 18 prospect and right-handed pitcher Yoan Lopez from the Double-A Jackson Generals, days after the roster limit for major league teams expanded from 25 to 40.

He pitched in 45 games for the Jackson Generals this season with an ERA of 2.92 and was 12-for-17 in save opportunities. Lopez posted a 1.04 WHIP and 87 strikeouts in 61.2 innings pitched.

Lopez, 25, has been in the Diamondbacks’ organization since 2015 after signing as an international prospect from Cuba when Dave Stewart was the team’s general manager. He had since left his minor league team twice, but returned and played well enough this season to earn himself a promotion.

He also appeared in this year’s Futures Game on MLB All-Star weekend, striking out the only batter he faced.

“Super excited for him, it’s a great story,” manager Torey Lovullo said Monday. “Obviously getting to the United States to play and migrating through our system and find himself in the big leagues, it’s a well-deserved honor.

“Somebody that came into the system with a huge arm, I think he’s learned how to pitch over the past couple of seasons and has been lights-out. He is maturing into what we had hoped and it’s a credit to him for all the hard work he’s put in.”

He throws a fastball and a slider.

Lovullo said he wasn’t exactly sure yet how Lopez would be used, but acknowledged that while the team wanted to give the prospect a “soft landing,” he was on the team to contribute as the playoff race intensifies.

“Just a lot of focus and hard work off the field, and giving my best every day,” Lopez said through a team translator when asked what had gone well for him this year. “And staying ready for when I’m called upon.”

The move comes two days after the team recalled pitchers Silvino Bracho, Matt Koch and Jimmie Sherfy, infielder Chris Owings, outfielder Socrates Brito and catcher Chris Stewart.

The D-backs now have 32 players on their active roster.

In a corresponding move for the 40-man roster, Jake Lamb was moved to the 60-day disabled list.

Arizona Sports’ Tom Kuebel contributed to this report.

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