Pittsburgh Pirates 2013 Top 20 Prospects

Gerrit Cole is the number one prospect in the system for the second year in a row.
Gerrit Cole is the number one prospect in the system for the second year in a row.

Today we completed the 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates top 20 prospects countdown with the shocking revelation that Gerrit Cole was the number one prospect in the system. The full list of players can be found in the links below, with write-ups on each player. The full top 50 list, as well as reports on every other player in the system, is only available in the Pirates Prospects 2013 Prospect Guide, which is now on sale. The book features over 250 prospect reports, the 2013 top 50 prospects, and the most comprehensive coverage of the Pirates’ farm system that you can find.  Be sure to purchase your copy of the book on the products page of the site.

Here are the top 20 reports.

20. Jin-De Jhang, C

19. Andrew Oliver, LHP

18. Vic Black, RHP

17. Adrian Sampson, RHP

16. Wyatt Mathisen, C

15. Bryan Morris, RHP

14. Justin Wilson, LHP

13. Tony Sanchez, C

12. Dilson Herrera, 2B

11. Clay Holmes, RHP

10. Nick Kingham, RHP

9. Kyle McPherson, RHP

8. Tyler Glasnow, RHP

7. Barrett Barnes, OF

6. Josh Bell, OF

5. Luis Heredia, RHP

4. Alen Hanson, SS

3. Gregory Polanco, OF

2. Jameson Taillon, RHP

1. Gerrit Cole, RHP

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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Was there any dissention between the contributors? Was anyone higher or lower on a prospect than other contributors?


Of course. Four people can’t agree on anything, let alone ranking other human beings. Our top 6’s were relatively the same, plus or minus a spot here and there, but after that there were diversions.

Some of us are higher on prospects that had good numbers at low levels (GCL/State College) and some of us wanted to see performance at full season leagues.

That’s what makes it interesting.

Sean Matthews

I would love to hear your perspective on the three prospects we traded to the Astros. What are their projections heading into 2013? Do you think we’ll see them out the gate or in September? I guess I’ll snag up the 2012 guide, thanks


Once they were traded, we don’t really keep up on them. Owens did not perform well with his peripheral stats after he went to HOU’s AAA team. He should still see HOU at some point in 2013, especially considering how wretched they will be again.

Grossman put up virtually the same stat line with HOU’s AA team after being traded. He’ll start the year at AAA, but I could certainly see him debuting with HOU in 2013 if he starts well.

Cain did not pitch well with HOU’s A+ franchise, but nobody pitches well there as Lancaster is one of the most hitter-friendly parks in the minors. He would be well served to be moved to AA (Texas League, his home state). He’s on more of a 2014-15 timeline at this point.

Chris Hale

I was wondering if Polanco and Hansen will be in Bradenton to start the season? I know Hansen still has a lot of defensive issue’s to work out and I think his base running too. Also I was wondering if they will move Heredia up to the West Virginia team at least to start the season because the Jamestown team doesn’t start until later on. I live real close to Jamestown and was wondering if I was going to get to go see Him play ? Looking foward to seeing Clay Holmes and Glasnow and possibly Barnes ,Mathesin and Carvajal


Yes, Polanco and Hansen should be in Bradenton.
Heredia may stay behind in extended ST for a little bit, but he will be in West Virginia and not Jamestown.

Holmes will also be in West Virginia, but Glasnow is a candidate for you to see in Jamestown.

Barnes will be at one of the A ball levels, whether it is West Virginia or Bradenton is undetermined at this point.

Jesse Cleaver

I know Locke and Marte have burned their prospect status but where would they fall on this list?

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