Paredes grew up idolizing fellow Dominican Yordano Ventura, another short right-hander with humble beginnings. As a skinny 5-foot-11 righty, Paredes had to wait three years after becoming eligible to find a pro contract, signing for $10,000 in October 2015. He has dominated for most of his pro career and reached Double-A in 2019, when he held opponents to a .155/.265/.229 batting line.
A spin-rate monster, Paredes generates unusually high rpm on his fastball and breaking pitches. His four-seam heater sits at 94-97 mph and tops out at 99, exploding on hitters as it seems to rise at the plate. Both his slider and curveball combine power and depth, with the former a plus pitch on a more consistent basis.
Paredes also has a changeup that shows promising deception and should become at least an average offering. He lacks size and features a lot of effort and recoil in his delivery, though he has the athleticism to make it work. It's unclear whether he can hold up as a starter over a full big league season, but if not, he could be a weapon as a multi-inning reliever.
Scouting grades: Fastball: 60 | Slider: 55 | Changeup: 50 | Control: 45 | Overall: 45
Skinny 5-foot-11 right-handers aren't exactly prized commodities, so while Paredes first became eligible to sign in July 2012, he had to wait until October 2015 to land a $10,000 bonus from the Astros. He made the low Class A Midwest League All-Star game in his 2017 full-season debut, but he missed the contest when an elbow injury ended his season in late May. He returned to dominate two low Class A levels last year, logging a 1.43 ERA with 90 strikeouts and a .141 opponent average in 69 innings.
Paredes idolized the late Yordano Ventura, another short Dominican righty with humble beginnings. He doesn't throw consistently as hard as Ventura did, but his electric arm speed produces 92-96 mph fastballs that top out at 99. His low-80s slider is a solid second pitch and while his changeup is in its early stages, it features promising deception.
Paredes has an athletic delivery and doesn't work with a lot of effort. He has been equally effective as a starter and reliever, but he'll have to provide more strikes and prove his durability to remain in the rotation. One club official likened him to a right-handed version of Cionel Perez.