Receiving the largest bonus given to any player past the 10th round to that point ($750,000, equivalent to third-round money) after being drafted in the 11th round of the 2013 draft, Steven Farinaro had a breakout season for the Low-A (short-season) State College Spikes in 2016, setting the Spikes’ single-season wins record.
Farinaro was named TCN’s State College Spikes Starting Pitcher of the Year for 2016 while guiding the squad to home field advantage throughout the playoffs and eventually the New York-Penn League championship. The California native finished his 2016 very strongly on a big stage by allowing just two hits and two walks over six scoreless innings in State College’s 3-0 Game 1 win over Hudson Valley in the NYPL finals. Including his last four starts of the regular season, Farinaro did not allow an earned run over his final 31 innings on the mound.
The 21-year old made steady improvement this past summer, compiling a 3.46 ERA over 14 starts. He produced 83 1/3 innings of work, the most of any State College pitcher this year. Farinaro yielded 100 hits and 38 runs, and gave up no home runs. He walked 18, hit two batters and struck out 53, posting a 1.42 WHIP.
The 6-foot-0, 170-pound right-hander throws his four-seam fastball from 90-92, touching 94 mph on his heater. With a mid-70s spike curveball, Farinaro also employs an above-average changeup and will mix in a newly-found two-seamer as well.
In this exclusive interview, Farinaro outlines his progress from this past season, elaborating on his stuff, tempo, and the goals he has in place for spring training come March.
Follow Derek Shore on Twitter @D_Shore23.
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