Baseball America

Seattle Mariners' Prospect Spotlight: Luiz Gohara

Starting up a series of spotlights on Mariners' prospects, the first prospect to be focused on will be hard throwing southpaw Luiz Gohara.

One of only a few players it seems Jack Zduriencik may have signed/picked correctly, is Brazilian lefty Luiz Gohara. At just 20 years of age, Gohara still has a lot of kinks to work out, but his high powered fastball and good mix of a slider and change presents a dangerous three pitch arsenal coming from a three quarters arm slot.

Gohara was signed by the Mariners as an international signing in 2012, when Gohara was just 16 years old, signing for $800,000. In his first couple years as a pro, Gohara pitched well in Rookie ball, but was hammered whenever he would pitch for Everett in Short Season A-ball.

Both 2014 and 2015 didn't go as planned, and some doubted whether Gohara could fully translate into a professional pitcher. 2016 told a new story though. Gohara dropped 30 pounds before the season, and dominated in Everett where he'd previously struggled. After just three starts with the Aquasox, the big man was promoted to Clinton where he continued to shine. In 13 starts over the 2016 campaign, the hefty lefty went 7-2 with a 1.81 ERA and 1.15 WHIP. In 69 and 2/3 innings, Gohara struck out 81 batters while walking just 23.

After a successful 2016 campaign, it seems certain the big Brazilian will move up the Mariners minor league ladder. Gohara will likely start in Advanced A with the Modesto Nuts with the hope being he can move up to Double-A with the Arkansas Travelers by the end of the season. At the rate he's going, it's likely Gohara makes it up to Seattle by 2018 or 2019, though the Mariners probably have no incentive to rush him.

There are a couple of more seasoned starters ahead of him in the pipeline, meaning there isn't a dire need for Gohara quite yet. Speaking of those pitchers in the pipeline, one of the best ones the Mariners have is lanky right hander Andrew Moore who will be the next Mariner prospect I will spotlight.

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