Born: March 17, 1985
Height: 6′ 2″
Weight: 200
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Signed: Amateur FA, Arizona Diamondbacks, 2005
How Acquired: Trade
Agent: N/A


The Pirates obtained Valdez as the player to be named later when they traded Zach Duke to Arizona. He signed out of the Dominican Republic at the relatively advanced age of 20, then moved quickly once he was in the D’backs’ system. His main pitch is a good changeup. His fastball is marginal. According to Baseball America, he sat around 90 and got up a little higher in the minors. In his brief major league trial, his velocity averaged a hair under 89. He also throws a curve. He’s a strong groundball pitcher who did a good job of keeping the ball in the park until he got to AAA. 

2006-07: Progressed well his first two years, although K rate was subpar. Very good control kept baserunners down.

2008: Had breakout year, leading BA to name him the system’s seventh best prospect after the season. Also rated him as having system’s best change and curve. Main improvements were K rate and very low HR rate.

2009: Regressed badly in AAA. HR rate more than tripled, K rate dropped by more than a quarter. Missed part of season with elbow injury. Some of the trouble may have been home park in Reno, a hitter’s park in a hitter’s league.

2010: Regressed further in AAA. K rate increased dramatically, but so did walk rate for first time. WHIP was very high. Filled in some for D’backs in May and June, with little success.

Arizona DFA’d Valdez after the 2010 season, so he doesn’t have to be placed on the Pirates’ 40-man roster. He’ll almost certainly open 2011 at Indianapolis, where he’ll provide rotation depth. He’s had no real success since getting beyond high A and has especially struggled the last two years. If he appears in Pittsburgh, things will be going very badly.

Baseball Reference–Majors
Baseball Reference–Minors
2011: Minor League Contract
2010: $400,000
2009: $400,000
Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2006
MLB Debut: 5/3/2010
MiLB FA Eligible: 2011
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: N/A
Options Remaining: 1 (USED: 2009, 2010)
MLB Service Time: 0.045
May 2, 2005: Signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks as an international free agent.
November 20, 2008: Contract purchased by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
September 13, 2010: Designated for assignment by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
December 9, 2010: Acquired by the Pittsburgh Pirates from the Cleveland Indians as the player to be named later for Zach Duke.