First Pitch

First Pitch: What is Brandon Cumpton’s Upside?

First Pitch: What is Brandon Cumpton’s Upside?

Brandon Cumpton made his first start in place of Wandy Rodriguez today, and he didn't disappoint. The right-hander went six innings, allowing two runs, one earned, on seven hits, with one walk and one strikeout. Cumpton now has a 3.38 ERA in his three starts this year, and a 2.55 ERA in 49.1 innings in his young major league career.

The scouting reports say that Cumpton will be a back of the rotation starter. His advanced metrics say that he won't be this good. Still, his xFIP is around league average numbers, and if that continues, he could have a chance to be more than just a back of the rotation guy.

Back in Spring Training, I spoke with Cumpton several times about his sinker, which isn't actually a sinker at all. It's a four seam fastball that just has so much movement that it gets classified as a sinker. Cumpton was a main feature for an article I did on the sinkerball, and in the process of researching that article, I found a lot of similarities between Cumpton and Charlie ...

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First Pitch
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Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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