Jeff Locke, ground balls, and management’s rationale for wanting Kevin Hart in the rotation

Jeff Locke, ground balls, and management’s rationale for wanting Kevin Hart in the rotation

Kevin Hart - Newscom

One prospect who I feel has been mostly underrated by Pirates fans is Jeff Locke, acquired in the trade that sent Nate McLouth to Atlanta in June of 2009. That opinion is mostly due to a glance at his FanGraphs page, which displays the following stats.


Braves - R

Braves - R

Braves - A

Braves - A+

Pirates - A+

It is clear that Locke has consistently outpitched his ERA over his career. Again, this was just from a quick glance at his stats. However, I recently began looking deeper, and it dawned on me that the majority of his FIP-value came from an absurdly low home run rate. He allowed only five home runs in 127.1 total innings last season, and he has served up just 17...

This content is for Pirates Prospects subscribers only. Subscribers get access to all of our daily articles on the Pirates and their minor league system, with live coverage throughout the system on a daily basis. Our lowest rates are $2.22 per month under our Top Prospect Plan, which also gets you a FREE copy of the 2016 Prospect Guide. Subscribe today to access all of our daily coverage of the Pirates' system.

If you're already a member, you can log in below. If you think you're receiving this message in error, please e-mail


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.

More in Analysis

Photo by Sean McCool.

Who is Remaining For the Pirates to Protect From the 2016 Rule 5 Draft?

Tim WilliamsOctober 8, 2016
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Pirates Have Off-Season Money to Spend in the Initial 2017 Payroll Projection

Tim WilliamsOctober 7, 2016
Adrian Valerio 3216

Instructs Report: Nice Day for Hughston at the Plate; Valerio Plays Second Base

John DrekerOctober 6, 2016

Instructs Report: Max Kranick Showing Promise With His New Curveball

Tim WilliamsOctober 5, 2016

Instructs Report: Stephen Alemais Showing Better Offense, Still Amazing Defense

Tim WilliamsOctober 4, 2016
(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Should the Pirates Trade Andrew McCutchen This Off-Season?

Tim WilliamsOctober 3, 2016

Pirates Prospects is an independent media outlet, and is in no way affiliated with the Pittsburgh Pirates, their minor league affiliates, Major League Baseball, or Minor League Baseball.

Copyright © 2016 Pirates Prospects