Analysis

Minor League Depth — Pitching, Part 3 (Lower Levels)

Minor League Depth — Pitching, Part 3 (Lower Levels)

It’s not easy to project how the Pirates will manage their low level pitching staffs. A lot of factors beyond on-field performance come into play when the team is deciding which pitchers to promote, or how to divvy up the finite number of innings that are available. The team looks at health issues and the need to build up stamina, mechanical issues, fastball command, and other factors that probably show up as much in camp and in instructional league as in regular season games. A lot of young pitchers, especially the non-college pitchers, aren’t ready for pro ball when they first join the system and may need considerable time before they can pitch in full season ball, or even move out of rookie ball. In some cases they never get to that stage. There’s a large winnowing out process that takes place at the short season levels.

In addition, distinctions between starter and reliever don’t mean a lot. For instance, a pitcher who projects as a starter may pitch in relief initially, the rec...

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Analysis

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