Prospect Trends — Week Ending 5/20

In a week when the Pirates narrowly missed being no-hit, and when their offensive ineptitude increasingly began to look like it might reach historic levels, it’s ironic that Indianapolis managed to be even more inept, getting shut out four straight times, and five times in six games going back to the previous week.  Worst of all, the Pirates’ top upper-level hitting prospects either slumped badly (Starling Marte and Robbie Grossman) or continued hitting at a mediocre level (Tony Sanchez).  Aside from the Indians’ offensive offensiveness, especially good or bad performances were difficult to find over the past week, so this edition will be a little light.


Tim Wood, RHP (AAA):  Wood got off to a terrible start in 2012, but suddenly settled down about a month ago.  In his last nine outings, he’s allowed just one run in 17 IP (o.53 ERA).  He’s given up just six hits and one walk, and fanned 15.  Of course, Wood has generally put up very good performances in AAA only to struggle whenever he’s been called up to the majors.

Kelson Brown, IF (AA):  Brown is just an organizational utility infielder, but he was Altoona’s best hitter while the Curve had several starters out with injuries.  Over his last ten games, Brown has gone 13-28 (.464), raising his average to .333.  And now that Jarek Cunningham is back from his wrist injury, Brown is back on the bench.

Gerrit Cole, RHP (High A):  Cole started only once in the last week, but in his last four starts he’s allowed only four runs in 23 IP (1.57 ERA), on 12 hits and five walks, while fanning 20.


Starling Marte, OF (AAA):  Since returning from his hand injury, Marte has gone 3-26 (.115) with eight strikeouts.  Hopefully, he’ll pick things up as the hand gets better.  For now, he’s hitting 239/305/391.

Robbie Grossman, OF (AA):  A week ago, Grossman seemed to be in the process of turning things around.  In the past week, though, he’s gone 2-23 (.087) with nine strikeouts.  He’s now hitting .214.

Alex Dickerson, 1B (High A):  Dickerson’s past week was brightened only by a 3-4 game on Saturday.  In his other five games during the week, he went 0-14.  He hasn’t had an extra base hits in ten days.

Prep Pitchers from the 2009 Draft Class:  This draft is looking more and more like a disaster.  Not one of the prep pitchers is having even a passable year.  The closest is Colton Cain, who was also the only one to get promoted.  He currently has an ERA of 5.18 and a WHIP of 1.42, and is striking out 6.5 batters per nine innings in a league where the average is 7.4.  Zack Dodson has a 6.17 ERA and 1.57 WHIP in a league that he’s repeating.  Zac Fuesser (actually drafted out of junior college rather than high school) has an ERA of 5.00 and WHIP of 1.58 while also repeating the league.  Trent Stevenson had a 9.26 ERA and retired.  And Zack von Rosenberg has struggled so much that he’s still in extended spring training.  Individually, maybe it’s too soon to give up on any of these guys (except Stevenson, of course).  As a group, though, somebody should have stepped forward by now.  Instead, they’ve all taken significant steps backward this year.

Share This Article


Wilbur Miller joined the site in July 2010. He has long been known for his excellent Player Profiles, which he brought to the site in February 2011, combining them with the existing Pirates Prospects Player Pages. Wilbur maintains the player pages section of the site, and provides regular articles to the main portion of the site, including a weekly Prospects Trend piece, featuring the best and worst prospects from the previous week.

Duke Welker Lighting Up the Radar Guns in Altoona

Next Story »

Exploring the Arsenal: Previewing the Mets’ Probable Starting Pitchers

  • Lee Young

    Your ‘Trending Down” section has made my hopes “Trend down”.
    The LAST thing we needed was a disastrous draft.

    Very depressing indeed.

    • wtmiller

      There’s a reason I cut this one kinda short. It wasn’t a good week.

  • Steve Dimmick

    who should we blame for the 09 prep pitchers?

    • wtmiller

      The scouts, IMO.

Latest Analysis

  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    What Led to Keon Broxton’s Breakout Year in Altoona?

    20 hours ago

    Keon Broxton used to be one of the top prospects in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ farm system. Baseball America ranked him as high as tenth in the system ...

    Read More
  • Adrian Sampson

    Don’t Forget About This Pitcher When Creating Your Pirates Dream Rotation

    2 days ago

    If you’re setting up a dream rotation for the Pittsburgh Pirates in the not-too-distant future, then you’re going to be throwing out names like Tyler Glasnow, Gerrit ...

    Read More
  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    Jose Tabata Changed His Swing After Talking With Marlon Byrd

    3 days ago

    Yesterday, Jose Tabata put one on the roof of the batting cages over the left-field fence at Pirate City. Today, he added two more. By that pattern, ...

    Read More
  • Antonio Bastardo

    How Ray Searage is Trying to Fix Antonio Bastardo’s Control Issues

    3 days ago

    Tony Watson has established himself as one of the best left-handed relievers in the game. Out of 142 qualified relievers last year, he ranked 21st in WAR, ...

    Read More
  • (Photo Credit: David Hague)

    Q&A: Will PNC Park Burn Down When Neil Walker Eventually Leaves?

    3 days ago

    Last week we started a Q&A article that will run every Friday. Right after the first article went up, we got a lot more questions. Normally I’ll ...

    Read More
  • Tyler Glasnow

    The Change That Will Help Tyler Glasnow Reach His Upside

    4 days ago

    The 2011 draft made headlines for the Pittsburgh Pirates for two main reasons. They selected Gerrit Cole first overall, and gave him a record-setting bonus of $8 ...

    Read More
  • Browse More Articles