MLB's top pitching prospect Paul Skenes to debut against Cubs on Saturday

Skenes is's No. 3 prospect and No. 1 pitching prospect

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The Chicago Cubs will see a new face on Saturday in the middle of their road series with the Pirates.

Paul Skenes, MLB's top pitching prospect and No. 3 overall prospect, will make his big league debut against the Cubs on Saturday as part of their three-game series, the Pirates announced on Wednesday.

Skenes is the golden child of the Pirates. They drafted him as the consensus No. 1 pick in the 2023 MLB entry draft. With that, they handed him a signing bonus worth $9.2 million.

They were careful with him, not letting him skip any steps in the developmental process. But he raced through all levels of the minor leagues, making his way to Double-A last season.

This season, the Pirates let him loose in Triple-A Indianapolis, where he continued to dominate. Through seven starts (27 1/3 innings) this season, Skenes holds a 0.99 ERA. He's struck out 45 batters and walked just eight of them. Skenes also holds a blistering 0.915 WHIP.

Skenes is known as a power pitcher. Close to 25% of his pitches this season have reached 100+ miles per hour. He throws his top pitch --- his fastball --- 46.9% of the time at a burning 99.9 mph average. His secondary pitches include a slider, split-finger, changeup and curveball.

He's been earmarked as a generational pitcher since his college days at LSU, where he led his team to a national championship last summer. Scouts dared to call Skenes MLB's best pitching prospect since Stephen Strasburg.

And the Cubs will be the first team to see him.

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