The Pittsburgh Pirates have released six minor league players, Pirates Prospects has learned. Included in that group are two Cuban players that each received large bonuses. Outfielder Carlos Mesa and pitchers Axel Diaz, Cesar Lopez, Elvin Ramirez, Kirk Singer and Eliecer Navarro were all let go.
Cesar Lopez signed for $600,000 in September of 2010. He was 19 years old at the time and was said to throw 94 MPH with a good sinker and plenty of projection. When he first started throwing, the velocity numbers were in the mid-80s and he never made it out of A-ball, briefly appearing for the Bradenton Marauders last year. His velocity returned late last year in the West Virginia bullpen, but the overall results were just average.
Carlos Mesa signed for $490,000 in May of 2011 and just like Lopez, he is out of Cuba. Unlike Lopez, Mesa was already 23 when he signed and it didn't look good when he struggled at State College that year. He was promoted to Bradenton in 2013 and put up poor nu...
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.