Pirate Prospect #19 – Matt Hague

I am counting down my personal list of the top 25 Pirate prospects. You can follow the countdown here, or by clicking on the “Top 25 Prospects” link in the site header.

Date of Birth:8/20/1985

Height: 6’3″

Weight: 225 pounds

Bats/Throws: R/R

Position: 3B

Drafted: 9th Round, 2008 (Oklahoma State University)

Matt Hague showed good plate discipline and some pop in his college career. He walked in well over 10% of his plate appearances, and his K/BB ratio was virtually 1/1. He also consistently posted an ISO above .200. The Pirates selected him in the ninth round of the 2008 draft and sent him to State College. After a brief stint there, he was promoted to Hickory. All along the way, he continued to hit well. He put up a .321/.384/.470 line in 242 plate appearances with Hickory, with 20 walks and 28 strikeouts. At 23, Hague must move through the system pretty quickly to maintain his prospect status. His strong plate discipline bodes well for his future, and his low strikeout totals indicate that he should be able to maintain a consistent average. In an organization with little power potential, Hague is someone to keep an eye on as he approaches Pittsburgh.

Defense could be an issue for Hague moving forward. He struggled at third with Hickory, and may need to move to first or a corner outfield position down the road. He will likely find playing time at third scarce with the organization’s sudden depth at that position. Hague would be much more valuable if he can remain at the hot corner long-term. It is questionable whether his bat would carry him at a less challenging position.

Expected arrival in Pittsburgh: 2012

Author: Matt Bandi

Matt has covered the Pirates at Wait ‘Til Next Year, Pittsburgh Lumber Co. and now Pirates Prospects. He served as Pirates team expert for Heater Magazine in 2009 and 2010 and has contributed to Graphical Player 2009, 2010 and 2011. Matt was also the editor of the 2011 and 2012 Pirates Prospects Annuals.

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