When the season ended last year, Altoona had what many Pirates fans considered a strong rotation full of four prospects who would all start the year for Indianapolis in 2011. It looked as if at this point in the season, we would be making decisions on where at least two pitchers would fit into our major league rotation, with the other two possibly not far behind. A not so funny thing happened on the way to that point. Rudy Owens, Justin Wilson, Bryan Morris and Jeff Locke, dubbed by some as the Altoona Four, strayed from the happy story line to where we are right now.

Before I get too far into this, let me say that I am not writing any of them off at this point. Bryan Morris is the oldest of the bunch, and he turned 24 just prior to the start of the season, so this isn't a make or break...

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John Dreker
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.