The Pittsburgh Pirates have promoted shortstop Alen Hanson to Altoona. He left today’s Bradenton game in the fourth inning. With Bradenton, Hanson hit .281 in 92 games, with 23 doubles, eight triples, seven homers and 24 stolen bases.
Alen Hanson came into this season as the Pirates fourth rated prospect, though some people had the 20-year-old switch-hitter rated ahead of Gregory Polanco. Hanson started the season off slowly, both on defense and at the bat. He hit .255 in April, with a .654 OPS., but he only did that with a good finish to the month. Hanson was hitting .191 on April 14th, a day he made three errors in the field. He was benched to clear his head and he then took extra infield with Gary Green, the Pirates minor league infield coordinator.
Hanson batted .311 in the month of May, then .300 in June, improving his monthly OPS from .840 in May to .880 in June, thanks to showing some power. He had just one homer between April/May. Last season, Hanson hit 16 homers for West Virginia, while also collecting 33 doubles and 13 triples.
He hasn’t been as good at the plate in July with a .250 average in 20 games, however his overall stats are strong and the Pirates have no prospects ahead of him in the system. Altoona has been using Drew Maggi at shortstop recently.
Altoona has 36 games left in their season, so this move gives Hanson a chance to get just over a month of experience at AA. It also gives Altoona three of the top four prospects in the system now, with Polanco and pitcher Jameson Taillon already on the team. Hanson was rated fourth in our mid-season prospect poll, though he was passed by West Virginia pitcher Tyler Glasnow.