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South Side Sox Top Prospect No. 48: Gil Luna Jr.

You couldn’t dream a better pro debut that this southpaw had in 2021.

Gil Luna Jr. is back, to choke the life out of batters throughout the Southeast.

Gil Luna Jr.

Left-Handed Relief Pitcher
173 pounds
Age: 22
SSS rank among all left-handed relief pitchers in the system: 5

Pitching for Casa Grande Union H.S. (Ariz.), Gil Luna Jr. was named in 2016 a Louisville Slugger All-American. Supposedly it had something to do with posting a 1.16 ERA with 138 strikeouts as a junior. Not only did Luna win that award as a junior, he had a fantastic senior season as well, which enticed the prestigious University of Arizona to lure him into its program.

Luna struggled, however, in first three years as a Wildcat with ERAs of 5.32, 10.31 and 9.15. However, something clicked for him during his senior season in 2021. In 14 appearances totaling 21 1⁄3 innings, Luna posted a nifty 1.69 ERA and 1.13 WHIP by ceding just 13 hits (.178 OBA) and 11 walks (12.8%) while striking out 31 (36.1%). Based upon his potential and success that senior year, the White Sox selected him in the ninth round of the 2021 draft.

Combined with the ACL Sox and Kannapolis, Luna posted an exceptional 0.00 ERA and 0.72 WHIP over 10 relief appearances. Spanning a combined 15 1⁄3 innings, he relinquished just five hits (.106 OBA) and six walks (11.3%) while striking out 24 (45.3%): totally amazing stuff. While Luna’s walk rate was high, it was a far cry from his collegiate rate of 19.9%. It’s fair to assume coaches can live with a little higher walk rate if Luna can somehow maintain those high K rates.

Luna’s primary offerings are a fastball and curveball, and the MLB Network panel specifically cited him on Draft Day as possessing good arm strength and good movement on his 12-6 curveball.

It’s difficult to say where Luna will begin 2022, as he only pitched four games for Kannapolis while being nearly a year younger than his competition. He may own the best stuff among southpaw relievers in the system, but the White Sox could give him more time to work on keeping the ball down, as his ground ball rate this year hovered near 30%.

Luna likely will be tested at Winston-Salem, where the ballpark is typically friendly to hitters.

2022 South Side Sox Top 100 White Sox Prospects

48. Gil Luna Jr. LHRP
49. John Parke, LHSP
50. Victor Quezada, 3B
51. Haylen Green, LHRP
52. Sammy Peralta, LHRP
53. Yoelvin Silven, RHRP
54. Taylor Broadway, RHRP
55. Noah Owen, RHRP
56. Luis Curbelo, 3B
57. Bryce Bush, RF
58. James Beard, CF
59. Xavier Fernández, C
60. Wilber Sánchez, SS
61. Kohl Simas, RHRP
62. Johan Dominguez, RHSP
63. Jagger Rusconi, 2B
64. Ronaldo Guzman, LHSP
65. Laz Rivera, 3B
66. Adam Hackenberg, C
67. Will Kincanon, RHRP
68. Lane Ramsey, RHRP
69. Tommy Sommer, LHSP
70. Randel Mondesi, RF
71. Shawn Goosenberg, 2B
72. Zack Muckenhirn, LHRP
73. Cameron Butler, CF
74. Godwin Bennett, RF
75. Logan Glass, CF
76. Dario Borrero, 1B
77. Craig Dedelow, RF
78. Carlos Hinestroza, RHRP
79. Gunnar Troutwine, C
80. Kade Mechals, RHSP
81: Caberea Weaver, CF
82. Layant Tapia, SS
83. Homer Cruz, RHRP
84. Kaleb Roper, RHSP
85. Jerry Burke, RHSP
86. Emerson Talavera, RHRP
87. Isaiah Carranza, RHSP
88. Davis Martin, RHSP
89. Tyler Osik, 1B
90. Samil Polanco, 3B
91. Manuel Veloz, RHRP
92. Pauly Milto, RHRP
93. Fraser Ellard, LHRP
94. Colby Smelley, C
95. Manuel Guariman, C
96. Everhett Hazelwood, RHRP
97. Garrett Schoenle, LHRP
98. Kyle Kubat, LHRP
99. Anderson Comas, RF
100. Jake Elliott, RHRP