Giants Sign Luis Ortiz, Wei-Chieh Huang To Minor League Deals

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The Giants have agreed to minor league contracts with free-agent right-handers Luis Ortiz and Wei-Chieh Huang, as indicated on the team’s official transactions log at MLB.com.

Both righties have a bit of big league experience, with Ortiz’s 2019 showing in Baltimore standing as the most recent. He’s tallied just 5 2/3 innings in the big leagues, all with the Orioles, and yielded eight runs on 11 hits and eight walks in that time. It’s not an especially impressive showing, but it’s a tiny sample of work for Ortiz, who notably ranked among the game’s top 100 prospects from 2016-17 in the estimation of Baseball America, Baseball Prospectus and MLB.com.

A former Rangers farmhand, Ortiz has been involved in a pair of notable trades — going from Texas to Milwaukee in the Jonathan Lucroy/Jeremy Jeffress deal before being flipped from Milwaukee to Baltimore as part of the return for Jonathan Schoop. At his prospect peak, Ortiz was praised for a mid-90s fastball, a plus slider and strong command, all of which gave him the upside of a mid-rotation starter.

Ortiz dealt with elbow and forearm troubles early in his pro career, however, and he’s only reached 100 innings in a single season (when he threw 102 between Double-A, Triple-A and Baltimore). He returned to the Rangers on a minor league deal for the 2021 season and worked primarily out of the bullpen in Triple-A Round Rock, where he posted a 4.60 ERA, a 23.4% strikeout rate and a 9.0% walk rate in 43 innings. Ortiz is still just 26 and has had solid results up through the Double-A level, but it’s been a rough go of it for him both in Triple-A and in the Majors.

Huang, 28, reached the bigs with Texas back in 2018 — albeit only for a brief 5 2/3-inning look. He held opponents to a pair of earned runs but also surrendered eight hits and five walks during that short-lived stint. Wang wasn’t with a Major League player pool in 2020, when there was no minor league season, and he didn’t pitch in affiliated ball last year either. However, he’s rattled off three perfect innings in the Dominican Winter League this year, fanning five hitters along the way. He’ll join the Giants org with a career 3.37 minor league ERA in addition to a strong 28.2% strikeout rate and an 8.7% walk rate.

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