Prospect Watch: Max Moroff Continues Breakout Season


A look at how the current top 30 prospects did today.  Note that this list doesn’t include players currently in the majors. If a player is in the majors, he will be removed, everyone below him will be shifted up a spot, and a new player will be added to the bottom of the list. If a player is out for the season, he will be removed and everyone below him will move up a spot. Removing these guys doesn’t mean they have lost prospect status. It is just an attempt to get 30 active prospects on the list. Rankings are from early season update, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

1. Tyler Glasnow, RHP, Altoona – DNP

2. Jameson Taillon, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List

3. Austin Meadows, CF, Bradenton – 0-for-4

4. Josh Bell, 1B, Altoona – 2-for-4, 2B, BB, SB

5. Alen Hanson, 2B, Indianapolis – DNP

6. Reese McGuire, C, Bradenton – 1-for-3

7. Nick Kingham, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List

8. Elias Diaz, C, Indianapolis – DNP

9. Harold Ramirez, OF, Bradenton – Pan-Am Tournament

10. Cole Tucker, SS, West Virginia – DNP

11. Kevin Newman, SS, Morgantown – 1-for-5

12. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, GCL – DNP

13. Mitch Keller, RHP, Bristol – DNP

14. Clay Holmes, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

15. Stephen Tarpley, LHP, West Virginia – DNP

16. Adrian Sampson, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

17. Max Moroff, 2B, Altoona – 3-for-5, HR

18. Barrett Barnes, OF, Bradenton – 0-for-3, BB

19. JaCoby Jones, SS, Bradenton – 0-for-3

20. Yeudy Garcia, RHP, West Virginia – DNP

21. Trey Supak, RHP, Bristol – DNP

22. Gage Hinsz, RHP, Bristol – DNP

23. Adam Frazier, SS, Altoona – 1-for-4

24. Willy Garcia, OF, Indianapolis – 0-for-4

25. Steven Brault, LHP, Altoona  – DNP

26. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Morgantown – 1-for-5, 2B

27. Tyler Eppler, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

28. Adrian Valerio, SS, GCL – DNP

29. Connor Joe, 1B, West Virginia – 0-for-3, BB

30. Jacob Taylor, RHP, GCL – DNP


Top Pitcher: Radhames Liz, RHP – 6.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Max Moroff, 2B-SS – 3-for-5, HR

Home Runs: Max Moroff (4), Carlos Munoz (3), Carlos Ozuna (1)


Box Score

Result: Toledo 3, Indianapolis 2

Starting Pitcher: Radhames Liz, RHP – 6.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Alen Hanson, 2B – 2-for-3, 2B

Other Notable Performers:

Pedro Florimon, SS – 2-for-4, 3B, BB

Gift Ngoepe, 3B – 1-for-4, 2B

Game Notes: Radhames Liz continues to excel as a starter since being sent down to Indianapolis. He now has a 1.44 ERA in 31.1 innings, including a 1.73 ERA in 26 innings over five starts. Alen Hanson has been struggling lately, with a .184 average in his last ten games. He did pick up his 12th double of the year today. Despite Jordy Mercer going down for the Pirates, don’t expect Hanson to come up to the majors. The Pirates will need either a shortstop to replace Mercer, or a third baseman to replace Jung-ho Kang. Brent Morel didn’t play today, so it’s possible that he could be the guy to come up if Mercer joins Josh Harrison on the DL. Morel has been hitting well, with a .903 OPS in June, and an .895 OPS so far in July. But that all comes with the disclaimer that he has struggled in every shot at the MLB level.



Box Score

Result: Richmond 6, Altoona 3

Starting Pitcher: Zack Dodson, LHP – 5.0 IP, 9 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 3 BB, 3 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Max Moroff, 2B-SS – 3-for-5, HR

Other Notable Performers:

Adam Frazier, SS – 1-for-4

Josh Bell, 1B – 2-for-4, 2B, BB, SB

Dan Gamache, 3B-2B – 1-for-3, BB

Game Notes: Max Moroff continued his breakout season, hitting his fourth homer of the year. Moroff has been on fire this month, hitting for a .338/.384/.456 line in 68 at-bats. He has six multi-hit games in his last ten games, and today was his second three hit game in a row. Josh Bell extended his hitting streak to nine games, and hit his 14th double of the year. Bell was going up against a right-hander tonight, which means he could bat left-handed. His power has been much better from the left side, with a .146 ISO, compared to an .043 ISO from the right side.



Box Score

Result: Palm Beach 3, Bradenton 2

Starting Pitcher: Jayson Aquino, LHP – 7.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Justin Maffei, RF – 2-for-4, 2B

Other Notable Performers:

Edwin Espinal, 1B – 1-for-2, 2B, BB

Montana DuRapau, RHP – 1.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 K, 0 HR

Game Notes: Montana DuRapau got the loss tonight after giving up a walk off run in the bottom of the ninth. The run was a rare occurrence for the right-hander, who snapped a 26.1 scoreless inning streak. This was also just his third earned run allowed in 34 innings since joining the Marauders. Jayson Aquino had one of his better starts since joining the Marauders. Aquino has looked very inconsistent since being claimed off waivers. Some nights he will look dominant, with a lot of strikeouts. Other nights he will fall apart. The Pirates have been working with him on keeping a consistent focus, and not letting outside factors affect him and throw him off his game.



Box Score

Result: West Virginia 4, Lexington 0

Starting Pitcher: John Sever, LHP – 4.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Elvis Escobar, CF – 2-for-4, SB

Other Notable Performers:

Michael Suchy, RF – 1-for-4, 2B

Pablo Reyes, 2B – 1-for-4, SB

Jeff Roy, LF – 1-for-3, 3B

Game Notes: John Sever made his return to the rotation, starting his first game since May 23rd. It wasn’t a long start, going just four innings, and the organization sees him as a power lefty out of the bullpen in the future. The start continued a good trend recently, where Sever has given up just one earned run in 14.2 innings over his last six appearances. The one run came on July 10th, when he was bounced in less than an inning of work after throwing 32 pitches, with four walks. Outside of that outing he has no earned runs in 14 innings, and a 16:3 K/BB ratio. Of course, that all follows a seven run outing on June 21st, so consistency will still be a focus for him moving forward. Michael Suchy continued his impressive season, hitting his 20th double of the year and pushing his OPS up to .801. Suchy was a fifth round pick last year.



Box Score

Result: West Virginia 8, Auburn 5

Starting Pitcher: Seth McGarry, RHP – 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K, 1 HR

Top Hitter: Logan Hill, RF – 3-for-5, 2B

Other Notable Performers:

Albert Baur, 1B – 2-for-2, BB

Ryan Nagle, DH – 1-for-4, 3B

Kevin Kramer, 2B – 1-for-5, 2B

Game Notes: Ryan Nagle, who signed an over-slot deal in the 27th round, made his debut tonight, and picked up his first pro hit with a triple. It’s hard to get a read on Seth McGarry, based on the numbers. He pitched a lot of innings in his junior year at Florida Atlantic, and is now transitioning to a starter after mostly working as a reliever. The result is that he doesn’t have his best stuff, since he needs to focus on spreading his work out over longer innings. McGarry’s upside is a reliever, but the Pirates will keep him as a starter for as long as possible for developmental purposes.



Box Score

Result: Bristol 13, Danville 3

Starting Pitcher: Marek Minarik, RHP – 5.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 0 HR

Top Hitter: Carlos Munoz, 1B – 4-for-6, HR

Other Notable Performers:

Carlos Ozuna, 3B – 2-for-6, 3B, HR

John Bormann, C – 2-for-5, BB

Henrry Rosario, LF – 4-for-5

Sandy Santos, CF – 3-for-6, 3B

Game Notes: I got to see Carlos Munoz a lot in the GCL last year, and was impressed with his hitting for most of the season. He’s got amazing plate patience, he hits for some power, and hits for a high average. Tonight he hit his third homer of the young season, giving him a .351/.444/.571 line in 77 at-bats. It’s a small sample size, but the numbers are strong. The only problem here is that Munoz is a big guy, with questions about his long-term position and role. Last year he looked great until the end of the year, at which point his numbers really fell off the table. That could be due to the conditioning issues. Until he proves that he can carry this success for a full season, his results will be in question.




The GCL Pirates were off today.



The DSL Pirates are on their All-Star break until Monday.

  • I, for one, am extremely glad Deibinson Romero is playing in Korea right now. Can’t get enough of Brent Morel in a Pittsburgh Pirate uniform.

    • I hated the Pirates for allowing that to happen. At the time he was a better option than Corey Hart…was really our best bench depth option…and now we have a need at his position and we are bringing up a complete DUD like Morel. Cant we at least swing a quick trade for Juan Uribe?!

      • I was mostly being facetious; Romero most likely pocketed more money with that one contract than he’s made in his entire life. On a personal level, hard to argue with a 28 yo career minor leaguer taking what likely amounts to life-changing money, or with the Pirates for allowing it to happen.

        But yeah, I’d still much, much take a chance on him right now than Morel.

  • Can Moroff play 3B? Haha.

  • BallHeadWonder
    July 20, 2015 9:15 am

    Got my first opportunity to see Bradenton live and ok guys, I will take the blame for the Bradenton loss!! The time I go out to see Montana pitch, he gives up a walk off run. After pitching so well this season, I finally got a chance to see him pitch and he struggled. I am the Biggest Fan here of this guy. I want to see him do really well every time out but he struggled yesterday. He hit 2 people, his control was not there and he labored the time he was out there!! The 3 hits he gave up were SOLID shot to the outfield. But 3 runs over 34 innings is still stellar.

    Aquino was really good yesterday. Ran into trouble in the 2nd, barking about balls and strikes, but pulled it together and put together a nice outing!! As you talked about consistency being his problem, he threw a Gem yesterday, so it will be good to see him next outing to see if he can duplicate this performance!!

    Jacoby Jones stood out also!! He easily handled 5 or 6 chances at short and showed me, he should have no problems sticking at short!! He has great size and a strong arm and the confidence to get the job done.

    Barrett Barnes also stood out for me!! He went 0-3 but all of his outs were SOLIDLY struck balls to the outfield. He just hit them where they were yesterday, but he is a player!!

    I really enjoyed watching this team play!! If Palm Beach is the best team, they can get them by the end of the season!! I feel we have the best team!! And that was my heart writing to you guys!! LOL!!

  • Tabata’s back. (Whopee!)

  • Even when Montana Du gives up a run, it is not like he gets hammered.

    • well he also hit two batters, throw in three hits in 1.2 and it was a pretty bad outing. Definitely a strange occurrence for him this year

  • Bell…His power has been much better from the left side, with a .146 ISO, compared to an .043 ISO from the right side.

    Abandon hitting from the right side. Can he be any worse Left on Left? Now’s the time to do it……….in the minors.

    • He’s hitting .290 right-handed. No reason for him to abandon it.

      • Wabbit_Season
        July 20, 2015 10:02 am

        Sounds to me like Bell is going to have that Neil Walker split. Effective at the plate and just not as good from the right side.

        Still, Bell has a year to work on it and I think Pedro’s replacement will be fine. Even at first base.

        Moroff, every time I see him in Altoona is outstanding. He’s gonna replace Walker no doubt.

        And I would love to see Gift”s bat work enough to come up to the bigs. His defense is jaw dropping.
        “Wait a minute, Mac. Just what kinda tracks was you followin’?”

  • Just heard a few minutes ago on the radio….according to a tweet from his agent…Brent Morel moving on up.

    • ugh…would’ve kept Kang at 3b and brought up Florimon or Ngoepe.If you’re bring up someone who can’t hit, he might as well bring a top glove.

      • Or keep Kang at 3rd and bring back Barmes? Just a thought.

        • Well, probably isn’t easy to swing a trade in 10 minutes.

          The Pirates have options…we just won’t use the best of them.

  • Lots of good stories in the minors, led by at least 4 or 5 of the SP’s. Liz as a SP has been excellent – whether the Pirates think he is ready or not will remain to be seen. Jayson Aquino has proven to be an excellent pickup from Colorado – at only 22 and a LHSP. I thought McGarry had a decent outing, and also Minarik who is showing a lot better control so far in 2015.

    John Sever pitched 4 innings in what I guess is called starting relief, and in the last 6 games has given up only 1 earned run in 15 innings. He was a SP and then moved to long relief – is that where the Pirates see his future, or is he having his innings limited? Last year he only had 49 IP after being drafted in the 20th Round out of Bethune-Cookman – great find along with DuRapau.

    Moroff, Bell, and Hanson all did very well at the plate. Watched Jaff Decker closely yesterday for the first 6 innings, and he looks like he will help the Pirates down the stretch. Excellent eye for the ball, and does not seem to get rattled. Our offense was a triple by Decker and a 2 out single by Jeff Locke.