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 (Nick Kingham, Jacob Taylor), 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 the mid-season update, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.
1. Tyler Glasnow, RHP, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
2. Jameson Taillon, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List
3. Austin Meadows, CF, Bradenton -[insert_php]
4. Josh Bell, 1B, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
5. Alen Hanson, 2B, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
6. Reese McGuire, C, Bradenton -[insert_php]
7. Elias Diaz, C, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
8. Harold Ramirez, OF, Bradenton -[insert_php]
9. Cole Tucker, SS, West Virginia – Disabled List
10. Kevin Newman, SS, West Virginia -[insert_php]
11. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Morgantown -[insert_php]
12. Mitch Keller, RHP, Bristol -[insert_php]
13. Clay Holmes, RHP, Bradenton -[insert_php]
14. Stephen Tarpley, LHP, West Virginia -[insert_php]
15. Max Moroff, 2B, Altoona -[insert_php]
16. Barrett Barnes, OF, Altoona -[insert_php]
17. Yeudy Garcia, RHP, West Virginia -[insert_php]
18. Trey Supak, RHP, Bristol -[insert_php]
19. Gage Hinsz, RHP, Bristol -[insert_php]
20. Adam Frazier, SS, Altoona -[insert_php]
21. Willy Garcia, OF, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
22. Steven Brault, LHP, Altoona -[insert_php]
23. Kevin Kramer, 2B, West Virginia -[insert_php]
24. Tyler Eppler, RHP, Bradenton -[insert_php]
25. Adrian Valerio, SS, GCL -[insert_php]
26. Connor Joe, 1B, West Virginia -[insert_php]
27. John Holdzkom, RHP, Indianapolis – Disabled List
28. Jordan Luplow, 3B, West Virginia – Disabled List
29. Casey Hughston, OF, Morgantown -[insert_php]
30. Billy Roth, RHP, Bristol -[insert_php]
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Tyler Glasnow made his sixth AAA start and he threw six shutout innings, allowing one hit, two walks and he struck out five batters. He had a 5:4 GO/AO ratio, which is much better than what we have seen from him early on in AAA. He wasn’t as dominating as his last start when he threw 6.1 shutout innings with nine strikeouts, but this was a more efficient outing. Glasnow didn’t work deep into counts, except in the fourth inning when he issued both walks. That was the only inning he was in trouble and he got out of it with a line drive right to first baseman Josh Bell, who tagged the runner for a big double play.
Glasnow gave up very few hard hit balls this game. The only hit was a loud double that hit the wall. The line drive to Bell was hit hard. There was a hard hit line drive right at Willy Garcia in right field and a foul ball that was absolutely crushed down the left field line, falling well beyond the fence, but wasn’t close to being fair. Glasnow hung a couple curves in this game that didn’t end up hurting him, but the pitch was still a plus offering when he got it down. He also threw a few more change-ups than last time out and was throwing them for strikes. He lowered his ERA to 0.81 through 33.1 innings.
Louisville had just three hits in this game, but still managed to pick up the 2-1 win. Indianapolis had plenty of chances to score with seven hits and six walks, they just couldn’t do anything with those opportunities, going 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position. Corey Hart had a pinch-hit RBI single in the ninth inning, then was removed for a pinch-runner. Tony Sanchez hit his 18th double, the only extra-base hit for the Indians. Josh Bell reached three times with two walks and a single. He also stole his second base since being promoted. Travis Snider is 9-for-23 in seven games with Indianapolis.
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ALTOONA – Jason Creasy got the start for the Curve, and he was only able to go 3 1/3 innings, allowing four earned runs, two walks, and four strikeouts. Trenton batters hit the ball hard off of Creasy throughout his whole outing, and they scattered nine hits against him including a double and a triple in the third.
Creasy got his pitch count up right away in the first inning, with the Curve having the bullpen up and going when Creasy pitch count was around 25 in the first. He was really never able to fully recover. Batters got into deep counts against him, and he was able to strike out four batters, but most at-bats ended with a hard hit.
Creasy had a couple of good starts in a row before tonight, going 12 innings with only three earned runs against him, but he was not able to take that momentum into tonight’s start. His ground ball to fly ball rate has been high lately, and that was a factor in tonight’s start, too.
A welcomed sighting for the Curve was a strong relief appearance by John Kuchno, who came in and pitched 3 2/3 innings of shutout ball. He has struggled in early August, but this is his third straight game without allowing a run.
Max Moroff and Mel Rojas, Jr. both tripled in the fifth inning, with Moroff’s blast going off of the 405 ft sign in center field. Moroff now has six extra bases hits in August including three home runs. He has also had numerous close calls to the warning track or wall that have been caught. Moroff has also drawn ten walks in the past week.
Adam Frazier added another single on the evening. He did commit a fielding error in the second inning, but he showed good range on multiple plays at shortstop. He also began a 6-5-3 double play in the sixth.
The Curve made two outs at third base that may have ended up costing them the game in the end. Jose Osuna went around third base after the center fielder lost the ball in the air, and Osuna tripled. Osuna thought he may have been able to score but quickly realized otherwise. He stopped, was caught between bases, and was tagged out by the third baseman. Eric Wood was waved home on a groundball up the middle that ended up getting gloved at the last moment, and he fell trying to stop between the bags. Manager Tom Prince took blame after the game, saying that he didn’t have a good view of the ball, and he thought it got through. Wood was also tagged out by the third baseman.
Akron won tonight, so the Curve are now only one game up for the last playoff spot. – Sean McCool
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Frank Duncan went six innings and allowed one earned run, though three Bradenton errors accounted for two unearned runs and a 3-2 loss. He had six strikeouts and no walks, giving him a 16:104 BB/SO ratio this season. The Marauders had nine hits in this game, but they went 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position and left seven runners on base. Wyatt Mathisen’s 14th double of the season was the only extra-base hit. He had two hits in the game.
Harold Ramirez went 1-for-4 in the game, giving him a .343 batting average. His average is 14 points higher than the league leader, but he now falls 63 plate appearances shy of qualifying for the league lead(at the end of the season), with just nine games left on the schedule. Ramirez could still win the batting title if he fell short of the plate appearances to qualify, but he is going to have to get on a hot streak the rest of the way. The league would take the amount of plate appearances he was short at the end, then add that many at-bats to his total, without adding any hits. If he still had the highest average, he would win.
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Yeudy Garcia came into this game with the best ERA(2.13) in the South Atlantic League and he ended up lowering it two points by allowing one run over 5.2 innings. He struck out ten batters, which is a new career high. His previous career best was six, which he did five times. Garcia surpassed the 100 strikeout mark in this game, finishing with 106, which is five behind the SAL leader. He didn’t allow the run until the sixth inning, which broke a string of 19 straight scoreless innings. Garcia struck out the side in the third and didn’t allow a hit until he had two outs in the fourth inning.
There was no power in the West Virginia bats in this game. Taylor Gushue hit his 16th double and drew a walk. Elvis Escobar had a single, Connor Joe and Chase Simpson each had a walk. That was it for base runners. They went 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position. Kevin Kramer and Kevin Newman went 0-for-8 at the top of the lineup. Kramer is 0-for-7 in two games since being promoted from Morgantown, which happened right after he had five hits in a game.
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JT Brubaker has looked like a sixth round steal in some of his outings and others he looks like an overdraft. In his last 11 outings, he has three games in which he allowed a total of 12 earned runs over 12.2 innings. In the other eight starts combined, he has given up one earned run in 42 innings. On Thursday night, he dominated for six innings, allowing a single and a double, with no walks, three strikeouts and ten ground ball outs.
Ke’Bryan Hayes played his second game for Morgantown and remained hitless, but he has scored two runs and driven in a pair. We mentioned yesterday the slump that third round pick Casey Hughston has been in lately, going 5-for-48 with 23 strikeouts over the last two weeks. In this game, he went 2-for-3, drew a walk and drove in two runs. Mitchell Tolman hit his 11th double and fourth triple. Christian Kelley had a single and drove in a run. He has reached base in 13 straight games.
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Bristol did all their scoring Thursday night on solo homers early in the game and ended up losing 4-2, hurting their slim playoff chances with just five days left in their season. Sandy Santos connected on his seventh homer of the season in the first inning. He later stole his seventh base of the season. Bealyn Chourio hit his second homer of the year in the second inning. Raul Siri played his second game for Bristol and was at second base, after playing third base in his debut. Siri has committed six errors at third base in limited time, but he is a natural second baseman, and has just one error there this year. He went 0-for-3 with a walk from the lead-off spot. Bristol had six hits, with six different players collecting one apiece.
Logan Sendelbach started and allowed one run over five innings. It took him a handful of very poor starts, but he has looked good in his last four games, giving up three earned runs over 22 innings. That comes with the caveat that he’s a 21-year-old college pitcher in rookie ball, but he needed to get innings in this year and probably wouldn’t have lasted long in the New York-Penn League with the way he pitched early.
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The GCL Pirates lost for the 11th straight time on Thursday, leaving them 2-16 since they spent one day tied for first place. For the second day in a row, they failed to pick up an extra base hit. The Pirates have hit just nine homers this season, with Michael de la Cruz and Edison Lantigua tied for the team lead with two apiece. There are only two games left on the schedule, as a doubleheader scheduled for Friday has now been changed to one game and they canceled the game that was postponed back in July.
This game included a strange pitching performance, that may have a real good explanation. Richard Mitchell pitched three years in the DSL, and has been in the bullpen in the GCL this year. That move seemed odd since he was such a good starter in the DSL. Mitchell last year was everything the Pirates teach. He pitched to contact, he kept his pitches down and worked the inside of the plate, while throwing all three of his pitches for strikes. He was doing exactly what the Pirates want all of their pitchers to do and having success. So why was he in the bullpen in the GCL this year, when it seemed like he could probably go to Bristol as a starter?
I talked to Mitchell right before the season started and asked him when he was going to pitch, then was a bit surprised when he only threw 2.1 innings out of the bullpen in his first game. I figured he was still getting stretched out, until he pitched twice more right away out of pen. So I went back to him and found out that the Pirates made some late changes to his mechanics and he was still working on them. After some time between his next outing, partially due to all the weather issues the team had, Mitchell gave up three runs in 2.1 innings. It was after that game, that it seemed like he became comfortable with the mechanics.
Before Thursday’s game, he had pitched 11 innings over five appearances since that one poor outing, allowing two earned runs. He was pitching like he did last year, throwing to contact and getting some decent results. He isn’t a strikeout pitcher and he tries not to be, which is the idea of pitching to contact. Mitchell came into Thursday’s game in the seventh inning with two men on and stranded them both, picking up two strikeouts. In the eighth inning, he struck out three more batters and topped off his outing with two strikeouts in the ninth.
Mitchell had seven strikeouts this year in 18.2 innings before Thursday, and he doubled his total in 2.2 innings. He didn’t just get lucky with a free swinging team either. The Phillies had one strikeout before he came into the game. Not only that, while in the DSL, he never struck out more than four in a game, and that was as a starting pitcher who almost always went five innings. It’s too bad this was his last outing of the season, because it looks like everything finally clicked into place.
As mentioned on Wednesday morning, Jesus Paredes was set to the return from a shoulder injury that has kept him out all season. He pitched one scoreless inning in his return on Thursday, allowing a single and he hit a batter.
Adrian Valerio was the only Pirates’ batter with more than one hit, picking up two singles. He has been in a batting slump lately, though he never took it out to the field, with 31 straight errorless games coming into this contest. Valerio reversed roles, breaking a 2-for-31 slump, while committing his eighth error of the season.
Victor Fernandez returned from a bruised forearm he suffered on Tuesday, which caused him to leave that game early and miss Wednesday’s game. He had two outfield assists, giving him eight on the season. The rest of the team has 11 total.