José Eugenio De León Domenech (born August 7, 1992) is a Puerto Rican professional baseball pitcher for the Minnesota Twins of Major League Baseball (MLB). He has previously played in MLB for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Tampa Bay Rays, and Cincinnati Reds.

José De León
De León with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2016
Minnesota Twins – No. 87
Born: (1992-08-07) August 7, 1992 (age 31)
Isabela, Puerto Rico
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
MLB debut
September 4, 2016, for the Los Angeles Dodgers
MLB statistics
(through 2023 season)
Win–loss record4–2
Earned run average7.44
Men's baseball
Representing  Puerto Rico
World Baseball Classic
Silver medal – second place 2017 Los Angeles Team

Career Edit

Los Angeles Dodgers Edit

De León played college baseball at Southern University from 2011 to 2013. He was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 24th round of the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft. He signed with the Dodgers and made his professional debut with the Arizona League Dodgers.[1] He was later promoted to the Ogden Raptors. De León returned to Ogden to start the 2014 season. After recording a 2.65 earned run average (ERA) and 77 strikeouts in 54+13 innings, he was promoted to the Great Lakes Loons.[2][3] In his second start with the Loons, De León had 14 strikeouts, breaking Clayton Kershaw's team record of 12 set in 2007.[4][5] In four starts with Great Lakes, he had a 1.19 ERA with 42 strikeouts in 22+23 innings. After the season, he was named the Pioneer League Pitcher of the Year, for his performance that season with Ogden.[6][7]

De León was assigned to the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes of the California League to start the 2015 season.[8] In seven starts for the Quakes he was 4–1 with a 1.67 ERA and he was promoted to the AA Tulsa Drillers of the Texas League on May 18.[9] He was selected to the California League mid-season all-star team but was unable to participate because of his promotion to AA.[10] He was selected as a second team Baseball America minor league all-star after the season.[11] He had a 2–6 record in AA with a 3.64 ERA and 105 strikeouts.[12] He was given a non-roster invitation to Dodgers spring training.[13] In 2016, he spent the season in AAA with the Oklahoma City Dodgers, where he was 7–1 with a 2.61 ERA in 16 starts. He also struck out 111 batters against only 20 walks.[12]

De León had his contract purchased by the Dodgers and was called up to the majors on September 3, 2016, making his debut as the starting pitcher for the Dodgers against the San Diego Padres on September 4.[14] He allowed four runs in six innings in his debut to pick up the win. His nine strikeouts (with no walks) was the second most by a Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher in his debut, trailing only Pedro Astacio and Kazuhisa Ishii.[15] In four starts for the Dodgers he was 2–0 with a 6.35 ERA.[16]

Tampa Bay Rays Edit

On January 23, 2017, the Dodgers traded De León to the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for second baseman Logan Forsythe.[17] De León started the 2017 season ranked as the Rays' third best prospect and 28th overall by MLB Pipeline.[18] He opened the season on the minor league disabled list due to discomfort in the flexor mass muscle in the forearm, which is often a precursor to Tommy John surgery.[19]

On May 29, De León got his first call-up by the Rays due to a depleted bullpen from a 15 inning victory against the Minnesota Twins the day before. In his Rays debut, he allowed three runs on four hits, two walks, and two strikeouts in 223 innings pitched, and took the win. He was sent back down the next day.[20]

On June 9, De León was put on the minor league disabled list with a mild lat strain.[21] On August 14, De León was placed on the minor league disabled list for the third time in 2017, this time with elbow tendinitis. De León was diagnosed with a torn ulnar collateral ligament on March 7, 2018.[22] One week later, Dr. James Andrews successfully performed Tommy John surgery, ending De León's 2018 season.[23] De León returned to game action in May 2019. He returned to the Rays active roster on August 14.[24]

Cincinnati Reds Edit

On November 20, 2019, the Rays traded De León to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for cash considerations or a player to be named later.[25] In 2020 for Cincinnati, De León registered an 18.00 ERA with 10 strikeouts in six innings of work across five appearances.[26]

De León posted a 4.63 ERA in 12 games for the Triple-A Louisville Bats, but struggled to an 8.35 ERA in 9 games with Cincinnati before being designated for assignment on July 19, 2021.[27] De León was released by the Reds organization on July 23.[28]

Boston Red Sox Edit

On August 4, 2021, De León agreed to a minor league deal with the Boston Red Sox; he was assigned to the Worcester Red Sox.[29] De León made two appearances for the rookie-level Florida Complex League Red Sox, allowing two runs on theee hits with four strikeouts in two innings pitched. He elected free agency following the season on November 7.[30]

Toronto Blue Jays Edit

On November 29, 2021, De León signed a minor league contract with the Toronto Blue Jays organization, and received an invitation to spring training.[31] He made three appearances for the rookie-level Florida Complex League Blue Jays and Single-A Dunedin Blue Jays before he was elevated to the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons. In 8 games (5 starts), De León logged a 4.35 ERA with 15 strikeouts in 10+13 innings pitched. He elected free agency following the season on November 10, 2022.[32]

Minnesota Twins Edit

On December 13, 2022, De León signed a minor league contract with the Minnesota Twins organization.[33] He began the 2023 season with the Triple-A St. Paul Saints, where he made 9 appearances and recorded a 3.62 ERA with 26 strikeouts and 1 save in 27.1 innings pitched. On May 16, 2023, De León's contract was selected to the active roster.[34] During a game against the Detroit Tigers on June 24, De León injured his arm while warming up in the 8th inning after being brought in to pitch.[35] To that point in the season, he had recorded a 4.67 ERA with 17 strikeouts in 17+13 innings pitched. On June 26, it was announced that De León would undergo Tommy John surgery after an MRI revealed a torn ligament in his right elbow.[36]

International career Edit

During the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC), De León pitched for the Puerto Rico national team. On March 13, 2023, he started versus Israel and retired every batter faced over 5+23 innings, including a WBC-record 10 strikeouts, to exit with an ongoing perfect game. Yacksel Ríos, Edwin Díaz, and Duane Underwood Jr. each relieved De León and retired every batter faced, and Martín Maldonado caught on the way to a 10–0 win. The contest ended when Maldonado scored on a walk-off hit in the bottom of the eighth inning that invoked the tournament's mercy rule. However, it did not qualify as an official perfect game per the Elias Sports Bureau, due to lasting fewer than nine innings.[37][38]

See also Edit

References Edit

  1. ^ Former Southern pitcher De Leon signs, sent to rookie league Archived July 1, 2015, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ "Raptors ace right-hander promoted to Low-A Great Lakes". Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  3. ^ "De Leon Promoted to Low-A Great Lakes - Ogden Raptors News". Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  4. ^ "Los Angeles Dodgers prospect Jose De Leon breaks Clayton Kershaw's Great Lakes Loons strikeout record". August 20, 2014. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  5. ^ "Los Angeles Dodgers prospect Jose De Leon continues Great Lakes Loons strikeout binge". August 30, 2014. Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  6. ^ "Jose De Leon named Pioneer League Pitcher of the Year". Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  7. ^ "De Leon Named Pitcher of the Year - Ogden Raptors News". Retrieved September 11, 2016.
  8. ^ Lindskog, Mike (April 7, 2015). "Quakes Announce Preliminary Roster". Retrieved April 7, 2015.
  9. ^ Cervenka, Ron (May 18, 2015). "Jose De Leon promoted to Double-A Tulsa". Retrieved May 18, 2015.
  10. ^ Dykstra, Sam (June 11, 2015). "Phillips, Reed headline Cal League All-Stars". Retrieved June 11, 2015.
  11. ^ Eddy, Matt (September 9, 2015). "Minor League All-Star Team 2015". Baseball America. Retrieved September 9, 2015.
  12. ^ a b "Jose DeLeon Minor League statistics & history". Baseball Reference.
  13. ^ Simon, Andrew (January 25, 2016). "Top pitching prospects invited to Dodgers camp". Archived from the original on October 19, 2017. Retrieved January 26, 2016.
  14. ^ Osborne, Cary (September 3, 2016). "The loud knocking of Jose De León gets answered". Retrieved September 3, 2016.
  15. ^ Minami, Craig (September 4, 2016). "Jose De Leon strikes out 9, Puig and Grandal homer in win". SB Nation. Retrieved September 4, 2016.
  16. ^ "2016 Los Angeles Dodgers Batting, Pitching & Fielding Statistics". Baseball Reference. Retrieved October 15, 2016.
  17. ^ Weisman, Jon (January 23, 2017). "Dodgers acquire second baseman Logan Forsythe". Retrieved January 23, 2017.
  18. ^ "Major League Baseball Prospect News". Major League Baseball. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  19. ^ Pashman, Althea (April 4, 2017). "Tampa Bay Rays: Jose De Leon Lands on Disabled List". Rays Colored Glasses. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  20. ^ "Rays' Jose De Leon earns win in club debut". Major League Baseball. Retrieved June 1, 2017.
  21. ^ "Jose De Leon Diagnosed With Mild Lat Strain |". Baseball America. June 9, 2017. Retrieved August 17, 2017.
  22. ^ Chastain, Bill (March 7, 2018). "Rays' De Leon diagnosed with torn UCL". Retrieved March 7, 2018.
  23. ^ "Jose De Leon undergoes Tommy John surgery". ESPN. March 14, 2018. Retrieved March 14, 2018.
  24. ^ Marc Topkin (August 14, 2019). "Rays place Avisail Garcia on IL, call up Jose De Leon". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved August 14, 2019.
  25. ^ Bobby Nightengale (November 20, 2019). "Cincinnati Reds add pitcher José De León in trade with Tampa Bay Rays". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved November 20, 2019.
  26. ^ "José de León making an early bid for the Reds 5th starter spot". December 21, 2020.
  27. ^ "Reds Designate Jose de Leon, Mark Payton for Assignment".
  28. ^ "Reds Put Nick Castellanos on IL, Release Jose de Leon".
  29. ^ "José De León Stats, Fantasy & News". Retrieved August 15, 2021.
  30. ^ "2021-22 Minor League Free Agents For All 30 MLB Teams". Retrieved April 18, 2023.
  31. ^ "Toronto Blue Jays on Twitter". Twitter. November 29, 2021. Retrieved November 29, 2021.
  32. ^ "2022-23 Minor League Free Agents For All 30 MLB Teams". Retrieved June 1, 2023.
  33. ^ "José De León on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved December 13, 2022.
  34. ^ "Twins' Jose De Leon: Selected to MLB roster". Retrieved May 16, 2023.
  35. ^ Park, Do-Hyoung. "Twins 'pretty broken up' about De León's arm injury". MLB. Retrieved June 25, 2023.
  36. ^ "Twins' Jose De Leon: Requires Tommy John surgery". Retrieved June 26, 2023.
  37. ^ "Astros' Martín Maldonado catches perfect game for Puerto Rico in WBC". Houston Chronicle. Associated Press. March 13, 2023. Retrieved March 15, 2023.
  38. ^ Passan, Jeff (March 13, 2023). "Puerto Rico's De Leon, bullpen 'perfect' in WBC mercy-rule win". Retrieved March 15, 2023.

External links Edit