First Pitch

First Pitch: When Do the Pirates Promote Their Pitching Prospects?

First Pitch: When Do the Pirates Promote Their Pitching Prospects?

The Pittsburgh Pirates have invested a lot of money into pitching prospects, especially through the MLB draft. They seem to have a very systematic way of moving guys through the system, with the innings at each level being a key trend to determine when a pitcher might move up. Ultimately, a player will only move up when he's ready from a developmental standpoint. If he has the innings, but isn't ready to move up, he probably won't move up. If he doesn't have the innings, the Pirates will probably wait until he gets to the low end of the normal range before a promotion, just to give enough time to see if the performance is legit.

There are going to be some questions this summer about the possible promotion of top prospects like Tyler Glasnow, Nick Kingham, Adrian Sampson and more. To get an idea of when these guys might be promoted, I went through the minors in previous years, looking at how many innings a pitcher threw at a certain level before a promotion. Remember that the key for...

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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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