Card: 2021 Bowman Chrome #BCP-250
Steven Cade Cavalli (born August 14, 1998 in Tulsa, Oklahoma) is a professional baseball pitcher for the Washington Nationals of Major League Baseball (MLB). Pitcher Cavalli was the 22nd overall pick of the 2020 amateur draft, by the Washington Nationals, out of the University of Oklahoma.
He was a two-way player in college, racking up 235 at-bats as a freshman in 2018, but his stock really started rising when he switched to the mound full-time the next year, when he went 5-3, 3.28 in 12 starts. In 2019, he played for the United States collegiate national baseball team.
Cavalli entered his junior year in 2020 as a top prospect for the upcoming draft and was named the Big 12 Conference Preseason Pitcher of the Year, although the season was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic after just 4 starts. The Nationals were actually the second team to draft him, as he had been a 29th round selection by the Atlanta Braves coming out of high school in 2017.
In his first professional season in 2021, he played for three different teams, starting in Class A with the Wilmington Blue Rocks and ending up in AAA with the Rochester Red Wings, with a stop with the AA Harrisburg Senators in between. In all, he went 7-9, 3.36 in 24 starts, logging 123 1/3 innings and punching out 175 batters. He was outstanding in both High-A and AA, although he found the going harder in AAA, where his ERA shot up to 7.30. Overall, his total of 175 strikeouts for the 2021 season between the three clubs led the minor leagues.
Cavalli rose to be a top 100 MLB prospect, and the National's top pitching prospect and was selected to pitch for the National League team in the 2021 Futures Game and pitched a scoreless inning. He was scheduled to return to the 2022 Futures Game but was a late roster scratch. He went 6-4, 3.71 in 20 starts for the AAA Rochester Red Wings that season before the Nationals announced that he would be called up to make his major league debut on August 26th. It did not go well, as the Cincinnati Reds tagged him for 7 runs on 6 hits and 2 walks in 4 1/3 innings and he was charged with a 7-3 loss.
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