Episode 18 of The Pirates Prospects Podcast can be downloaded or streamed below. We moved the major league show back this week, due to James Santelli being on the West Coast covering the Pirates. Instead, I was joined by Pirates Director of Minor League Operations Larry Broadway, who discussed several of the top prospects in the system. Highlights of the show include:
**We were recording at McKechnie Field in Bradenton during a rain delay on Thursday, so the first topic was Bradenton first baseman Stetson Allie and his breakout season.
Running through some of the top ten prospects:
**Can Jameson Taillon be ready by mid-season 2014?
**It takes a long time for tall, skinny athletes like Gregory Polanco and Tyler Glasnow to get a feel for their body, but when they do they really start taking off.
**Can Gregory Polanco make it to Indianapolis by the end of the year? I got no answer, but we discussed what a player needs to do to move up.
**We talked about Alen Hanson’s defense, and how he shows the ability to stick at shortstop but can mess up on routine plays. Broadway says the Pirates feel he can be an everyday shortstop.
**Polanco and Hanson were breakout prospects last year in West Virginia. Tyler Glasnow is this year’s breakout prospect. I ask if his upside could be the same as Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon. This all came before Glasnow’s 13 strikeouts in five innings last night.
**Josh Bell is showing some power this year, although there have been reports that his swing from the right side needs work. We discuss his season and the swing.
**Broadway gives his thoughts on how Austin Meadows and Reese McGuire have started off.
**Next year the Pirates might have a crunch at catcher in low-A, with McGuire, Wyatt Mathisen, and Jin-De Jhang all projected at the position. It’s still early, but how will they manage all three players?
**Can Austin Meadows be an impact power guy in the majors?
**Broadway scouted and signed Nick Kingham in the 2010 draft. We talk about his progression so far as a pro, going from an over-slot prep pitcher to a guy who is hitting 97-98 MPH at times this year.
**The Pirates have taken a lot of over-slot prep pitchers. They’ve seen several break out, led by Glasnow and Kingham. We talk about what leads to an increase in velocity and the topic of projectability.
**Luis Heredia started late this season due to some conditioning issues, but has made some lifestyle changes since then. His biggest issue this year has been the walks, mostly due to his inability to control his body at a young age.
**Music: ‘Let’s Get it Started’ by Oh No Not Stereo. Courtesy of BeatPick.com
Click here to download the show (right-click and “Save Link As”) or stream it below.
‘Let’s Get it Started’ by Oh No Not Stereo. Courtesy of BeatPick.com