Matthew Liberatore
19-Year-Old PitcherRP
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Any investment in a prep pitcher who has not made his full-season debut is fraught with risk, but Liberatore has the qualities dynasty-league managers should be looking for when contemplating taking that plunge. A 6-foot-5, 200-pound southpaw, Liberatore was in the mix to be a top-five pick in 2018, but his velocity ticked down and he scuffled with his command late in his senior year. That small sample led to the Rays getting a bargain with the No. 16 overall pick. Liberatore was sitting 92-93 mph with his fastball and touched 95 mph after signing. He also boasts a plus curveball and a changeup that projects as another plus secondary offering. There is no guarantee that he will add velocity in the coming years, but given his age and projectable frame, it would not be surprising if he were sitting 94-95 mph with his heater by the time he reaches the majors. That would all add up to a frontline starter, given his athleticism and expected command gains. Read Past Outlooks
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$Signed a contract with the Rays in June of 2018 that includes a $3.5 million signing bonus.
Targeting 115 innings
PTampa Bay Rays  A
March 25, 2019
Liberatore is expected to be held back in extended spring training to start the year but still expects to throw around 115 innings in his first full season, Jonathan Mayo of reports.
Teams often hold young pitchers back in extended spring training early in the season rather than sending them out to pitch in the Midwest before the weather heats up. Liberatore should join Low-A Bowling Green in May or June, which will give him plenty of time to hit his innings goal. Given his advanced arsenal and command, he could move quicker than the typical prep arm.
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Signs, joining GCL club Wednesday
PTampa Bay Rays  A
June 13, 2018
Liberatore, the 16th overall pick in the 2018 first-year player draft, signed with the Rays for $3.5 million Friday and will head to the organization's Gulf Coast League team Wednesday, Bill Chastain of reports.
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Goes 16th overall to Rays
PTampa Bay Rays  A
June 4, 2018
The Rays have selected Liberatore with the 16th overall pick in the 2018 first-year player draft
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