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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Singh and Patel Not the Only Reality Show Winners

Richardson signed with the Pirates after winning a Dominican reality show.

I was doing research today to finish the international prospects section of the 2011 Pirates Prospects handbook, and came across this bit of information about 18 year old Dominican left hander Cristopher Richardson:

Pittsburgh is also pursuing Cristopher Richardson, 17, a Dominican lefty and winner of that nation’s reality show El Rookie. Pirates G.M. Neal Huntington downplays the connection. “We are not interested in signing winners of reality shows,” he says. “Rather, we are interested in signing talented baseball players.”

The Pirates did end up signing Richardson, a 6′ 0″, 184 pound left handed pitcher, spending $80 K to get the reality show winner.  The talented baseball player description may be accurate, as Richardson put up an 11.1 K/9 and a 4.3 BB/9 in 38 innings in his pro debut, with a .275 BAA.  He also throws 91 MPH, which is good for a left hander of his age.  He attended the Florida Instructional Leagues this off-season, and could make the jump to the US in 2011, similar to the path that Joely Rodriguez took this year.

In doing research on Richardson, I stumbled across this short video from the “El Rookie” show:

Richardson could be an interesting story to watch in 2011.

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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.

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