One day after trading away two of their top twenty pitching prospects, Rudy Owens and Colton Cain, the Pirates send some big names to the mound in the minors. Top prospects Gerrit Cole and Jameson Taillon, along with rising prospect Clay Holmes all take the mound tonight. Zack Dodson also takes the mound, as he now moves up the left-handed pitching chart with two lefties gone from the system. Indianapolis has an early afternoon game today. A full recap of yesterday’s games can be found here.
Triple-A: Indianapolis (65-40) vs Pawtucket (58-47) 1:05pm
Probable starter: Rick VandenHurk (9-2 3.47)
Yesterday’s Result: Indianapolis 3 Pawtucket 1 (game recap)
Rick VandenHurk will make his 12th start for Indianapolis tonight. He has also made two relief appearances for Indy and one rehab start for Bradenton. For Indy, Rick has pitched a total 72.2 innings, giving up 70 hits, five homers, 25 walks and he has 60 strikeouts. In his last start, Rick went seven innings, allowing three runs and taking the loss. He is 3-2 4.19 on the road this year in six starts and one relief outing.
Double-A: Altoona (51-51) @ Reading (51-51) 7:05pm
Probable starter: Gerrit Cole (2-3 4.71)
Yesterday’s Result: Altoona 6 Reading 2
Gerrit Cole will make his sixth start for Altoona and 19th start overall on the season. While with Bradenton, he pitched 67 innings, allowing 53 hits, five homers, 21 walks and he had 69 strikeouts. Since joining Altoona, he has pitched 21 innings, allowing 25 hits, one homer, five walks and he has 21 strikeouts. In his last start, Gerrit allowed three runs(two earned) on three hits and three walks. It was the lowest hit total he has allowed in AA, though it was also the highest walk total, one more than he allowed in his first four starts combined.
High-A: Bradenton (47-54 overall 18-13 2nd half) @ St Lucie (62-38 overall 13-19 2nd half) 6:30pm
Probable starter: Jameson Taillon (5-7 4.27)
Yesterday’s Result: St Lucie 7 Bradenton 5
Jameson Taillon will make his 19th start of the season tonight. He has pitched a total of 97 innings, allowing 86 hits, six homers, 30 walks and he has 78 strikeouts with a 1.11 GO/AO ratio. In his last outing, Jameson gave up one earned run over 5.2 innings, giving up five hits and two walks. Since the FSL All-Star break, Taillon is 2-1 3.68 in five starts. On the road this season, he is 2-6 6.04 in ten starts.
Low-A: West Virginia (40-62 overall 17-15 2nd half) @ Greensboro (60-42 overall 14-18 2nd half) 7:00pm
Probable starter: Zack Dodson (4-6 5.26)
Yesterday’s Result: West Virginia 9 Greensboro 6
Zack Dodson will make his 20th start of the season tonight. He has pitched 89 innings, allowing 105 hits, 11 homers, 34 walks and he has struck out 60 batters. In his last start, Zack gave up three runs over five innings of work, allowing two homers. In his prior two outings, he gave up one earned run over 13 innings. Dodson has a 2-5 6.92 road record in 12 starts this year. Since the SAL All-Star break, he is 3-1 3.98 in six starts.
Short Season A: State College (20-16) @ Connecticut (16-20) 7:05pm
Probable Starter: Clay Holmes (3-1 0.94)
Yesterday’s Result: State College 4 Batavia 3
Clay Holmes will make his seventh start of the season tonight. He has pitched a total of 28.2 innings, allowing 13 hits, no homers, 11 walks and he has 19 strikeouts, with a 1.48 GO/AO ratio. In four of his six outings, Holmes has allowed just one hit over five innings, including each of his last three starts. Clay has pitched ten scoreless innings in his two road starts this year.
Rookie: GCL Pirates (20-12) VS GCL Tigers (22-9) 12:00pm
Yesterday’s Result: Pirates 7 Blue Jays 6
DSL: Pirates1 (25-19) VS Yankees2 (12-32) 10:30am
Yesterday’s Result: Pirates 1 Mets 3
DSL: Pirates2 (18-25) VS Mets1 (24-19) 10:30am
Yesterday’s Result: Pirates 5 Cubs 4
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.