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Gore impressive on mound in Futures Game

@RichardJustice
July 7, 2019

CLEVELAND -- MacKenzie Gore needed one inning on a big stage to remind the Padres why they believe the 20-year-old left-hander is going to be so special. In an organization flush with quality pitching, Gore is projected to be the best of them all.

CLEVELAND -- MacKenzie Gore needed one inning on a big stage to remind the Padres why they believe the 20-year-old left-hander is going to be so special. In an organization flush with quality pitching, Gore is projected to be the best of them all.

He showed off some of those gifts -- a 94 mph fastball and vaporizing slider -- in a one-inning stint in the SiriusXM Futures Game on Sunday at Progressive Field. Taking over in the bottom of the second inning, Gore walked Jo Adell to open the inning, then promptly showed a quality pickoff move, nailing him at first.

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He retired the next two batters, finishing his inning in just 11 pitches and making another case for making his Major League debut, possibly as soon as 2020.

“There were a lot of nerves,” Gore told MLB Network. “I tried to get settled in. It was a lot of fun.”

To be part of a nationally televised game that puts baseball’s best young players on display was everything Gore could have hoped for.

“It's been awesome,” he said. “The hard work has paid off. I am in a good spot right now and I need to keep working.”

Gore is MLB Pipeline’s No. 3 overall prospect and has been close to unhittable during a first half at Class A Advanced Lake Elsinore. In 15 starts, he has a 1.02 ERA with -- wait for it -- 20 walks and 110 strikeouts in 79 1/3 innings. This day was one more step on his path to Petco Park.

“All these guys, they are really good players and just to be around them, that’s the future of the game,” Gore said.

Richard Justice has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2011. Listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter at @RichardJustice.