Still waiting to confirm this, but from what I’ve been told, Indianapolis Indians pitcher Michael Crotta will be added to the 40-man roster tonight, which will protect the right hander from the upcoming Rule 5 draft. Crotta was eligible for the first time in 2009, although he was coming off a season with a 4.76 ERA in 143.2 innings, with a 6.1 K/9, a 2.1 BB/9, and an 0.4 HR/9 ratio at the AA level.
Crotta started off strong in AA in 2010, with a 1.78 ERA in 25.1 innings over four starts, with a 5.7 K/9, a 1.1 BB/9, and no homers allowed. He moved to AAA, where he put up a 4.93 ERA in 131.1 innings, although his ratios were strong with a 6.1 K/9, a 2.5 BB/9, and a 0.7 HR/9. You can see Crotta in action in this video recap of his April 13th start with Altoona.
Crotta is a sinker ball pitcher, with a 90-93 MPH fastball. He’s been hit hard as a starter in his minor league career, although he usually gets off to a good start, and allows damage later in the game. His command has really taken a step forward in the last two years, leading to his increase in value in 2010. The overall numbers as a starter don’t look great, but Crotta’s ratios and pitch selection make him a solid Major League relief prospect, possibly making the 2011 team out of Spring Training.
Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.