Signed by the Padres for $125,000 out of the Dominican Republic in February 2015, Clase logged a 5.23 ERA in his first two seasons in the United States. Looking to shore up its catching depth, San Diego traded him to the Rangers for Brett Nicholas in April 2018. In 2019, he emerged as one of the hardest throwers in the Minors, drew comparisons to former Texas closer Neftali Feliz and excelled in his big league debut -- then went to the Indians in December as part of the Corey Kluber trade.
Clase's fastball peaked in the upper 80s when he signed at age 16, topped out in the mid-90s when he got dealt and now regularly climbs into triple-digit territory. Working in short stints as a reliever, he usually deals at 97-99 mph and has reached 102. His fastball has significant cutting and riding life as well, which makes it hard for hitters to square up but also for him to locate it where he wants.
At times, Clase also will overmatch batters with a power slider with depth, though it lacks consistency and can turn into a flatter slurve. He generates his velocity with a fast arm rather than effort, and the Rangers helped him dramatically improve his control after acquiring him. If he can do the same with his command, he could be a closer.
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Cleveland Indians traded RHP Corey Kluber and cash to Texas Rangers for RHP Emmanuel Clase and CF Delino DeShields.
RHP Emmanuel Clase assigned to Estrellas Orientales.
Texas Rangers selected the contract of RHP Emmanuel Clase from Frisco RoughRiders.
Emmanuel Clase assigned to Frisco RoughRiders from Down East Wood Ducks.
RHP Emmanuel Clase assigned to Down East Wood Ducks from Spokane Indians.
RHP Emmanuel Clase assigned to Texas Rangers.
AZL Padres 2 traded RHP Emmanuel Clase to Spokane Indians.
RHP Emmanuel Clase assigned to Tri-City Dust Devils from AZL Padres.
RHP Emmanuel Clase assigned to AZL Padres.
RHP Emmanuel Clase assigned to DSL Padres.
San Diego Padres signed free agent RHP Emmanuel Clase to a minor league contract.