Pittsburgh Pirates Prospect Watch 8/31/09

Today’s Prospect Feature: Nelson Pereira made a strong debut in the US last year, posting a 1.62 ERA in 50 innings in the GCL, with a 46:10 K/BB ratio. This was after two seasons with the VSL Pirates where he combined for a 2.62 ERA, and a 98:38 K/BB ratio in 123.2 innings pitched.

Coming in to the season, Pereira was rated the number 30 prospect in the Pirates system according to Baseball America. This year he started off in State College at the age of 20, and while he struggled early in the season, he has recently redeemed himself as a legit pitching prospect.

Pereira started out the season with a 11.25 ERA in his first 12 innings of work, with a 2.42 WHIP, and a 16:11 K/BB ratio. On July 11th he pitched 2.2 innings, allowing five runs on four hits, with two walks and six strikeouts. From that point he has been spectacular. In the 34 innings since July 11th, Pereira has a 1.85 ERA, 1.00 WHIP, and a 38:15 K/BB ratio in nine appearances, including four no-hit innings tonight.

Pereira will have to fight to get back in the top 30 next year with all of the talent the Pirates have added this year. That doesn’t mean he’s done as a prospect, especially since his 2009 performance has been much better than the numbers show.

The Prospect Tracker is updated with tonight’s games.

AAA

The Result: Indianapolis lost 3-2 to Toledo.

-Jose Tabata went 0 for 4.

-Argenis Diaz went 1 for 3.

Other Game Notes: Indianapolis only managed three hits. Jorge Julio pitched two shutout innings, allowing two hits and striking out two.

AA

The Result: Altoona lost 4-3 to Erie.

-Gorkys Hernandez went 1 for 5 with a run.

-Pedro Alvarez went 2 for 4 in his final game of the season before joining Team USA in the World Cup.

-Daniel Moskos pitched six innings, allowing four runs on six hits, with a walk and eight strikeouts.

Other Game Notes: Shelby Ford went 1 for 3 with a double. Dustin Molleken pitched two shutout innings, with no hits, two walks, and two strikeouts.

A+

Lynchburg was off today.

A

The Result: West Virginia won 4-2 against Hickory.

-Robbie Grossman went 0 for 4 with four strikeouts.

-Tony Sanchez went 1 for 3 with a double and a walk.

-Starling Marte went 2 for 3 with a stolen base in his third straight game.

Other Game Notes: Hunter Strickland pitched five innings, allowing two runs on four hits, with three walks and four strikeouts. Casey Erickson pitched 2.2 shutout innings, allowing three hits, no walks, and striking out three.

A-

The Result: State College lost 8-7 to Batavia.

Game Notes: Brock Holt went 1 for 5. Evan Chambers went 2 for 3 with two walks. Nelson Pereira pitched four no hit innings, allowing no runs, two walks, and striking out nine.

GCL

The Result: Bradenton played their final game of the season, losing 2-1 to the GCL Blue Jays.

-Wes Freeman did not play.

-Gift Ngoepe went 2 for 5 with his first homer of the year.

-Ramon Cabrera did not play.

Other Game Notes: Zack Von Rosenberg made his professional debut, pitching two perfect innings, with two strikeouts.

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Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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