Looking at the Pirates' prospects as spring training continues...  Today we'll begin with the first basemen, moving up from the lower levels to the upper levels of the organization.

Michaelangel Trinidad  --  L/L,  5' 11",  232 lb
Trinidad is a 22-year-old Curacao native who has been in the Pirates' organization since the 2006 season.  He played in the Venezuelan Summer League for three years.  In the third season, 2009, Trinidad hit .318, with 14 homers and a .604 SLG.  He made the move to the US and the GCL in 2010, but the start of his season was delayed by injury.  Once he got going, at the end of June, Trinidad hit .267 in July with 3 homers and 10 RBI.  That dropped to .211 in August, with one more homer and 6 RBI.  Trinidad's upside is his power, especially since it was not accompanied by a ton of strikeouts (14 strikeouts in 27 games in the GCL, 16%).  His downside is his size.  He could get to State College for 2011, where he will need to continue the power surge but also make sure he stays in shape.

Gerlis Rodriguez  --  Bats: both/ Throws L,  6' 2",  185 lb
Rodriguez is also 22 years old, a Dominican Republic native.  Like Trinidad, he also spent 3 seasons in the VSL, where he bumped his batting average up to .291 in the third year.  Rodriguez spent 2009 with the GCL Pirates, hitting .266 with little power.  He moved up to State College for 2010, where he played first base and did some DH-ing (plus one game in left field).  He made 6 errors at first in 26 games.  At the plate, Rodriguez hit .201, with just 8 doubles, one homer, and 24 RBI in 48 games.  His walk rate dropped (11 walks, 6%) and his strikeout rate climbed (34 strikeouts, 21%) in 2010.  He should probably return to State College to work on some plate discipline and get the errors down. 

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