Prospect Watch: Nick Kingham Throws Four Shutout Innings

P2 Top 30

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 the 2016 prospect guide, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

We’re working on a solution for the PHP stat codes not working in the app.

1. Tyler Glasnow, RHP, Indianapolis -[insert_php] include_once (‘./p2-stats/stats_functions.php’);

2. Austin Meadows, CF, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(640457,’B’,’20160719′);

3. Josh Bell, 1B, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(605137,’B’,’20160719′);

4. Jameson Taillon, RHP, Pirates – In the Majors

5. Alen Hanson, 2B, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(593700,’B’,’20160719′);

6. Harold Ramirez, OF, Altoona -[insert_php] display_top30(623912,’B’,’20160719′);

7. Reese McGuire, C, Altoona -[insert_php] display_top30(624512,’B’,’20160719′);

8. Elias Diaz, C, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(553869,’B’,’20160719′);

9. Nick Kingham, RHP, GCL Pirates – [insert_php] display_top30(592468,’P’,’20160719′);

10. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, West Virginia -[insert_php] display_top30(663647,’B’,’20160719′);

11. Kevin Newman, SS, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(621028,’B’,’20160719′);

12. Yeudy Garcia, RHP, Bradenton -[insert_php] display_top30(650817,’P’,’20160719′);

13. Steven Brault, LHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(643230,’P’,’20160719′);

 14. Stephen Tarpley, LHP, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(605501,’P’,’20160719′);

15.Cole Tucker, SS, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(657061,’B’,’20160719′);

16. Chad Kuhl, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(641771,’P’,’20160719′);

17. Max Moroff, 2B, Indianapolis -[insert_php] display_top30(621559,’B’,’20160719′);

18. Mitch Keller, RHP, West Virginia -[insert_php] display_top30(656605,’P’,’20160719′);

19. Clay Holmes, RHP, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(605280,’P’,’20160719′);

20. Willy Garcia, OF, Indianapolis -[insert_php] display_top30(591994,’B’,’20160719′);

21. Brandon Waddell, LHP, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(663399,’P’,’20160719′);

22. Tyler Eppler, RHP, Altoona -[insert_php] display_top30(621169,’P’,’20160719′);

23. Barrett Barnes, OF, Altoona -[insert_php] display_top30(608627,’B’,’20160719′);

24. Trevor Williams, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(592866,’P’,’20160719′);

25. Gage Hinsz, RHP, West Virginia  – [insert_php] display_top30(656543,’P’,’20160719′);

26. Adrian Valerio, SS – Bristol – [insert_php] display_top30(650832,’B’,’20160719′);

27. Adam Frazier, INF/OF, Pirates – In the Majors

28. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Bradenton -[insert_php] display_top30(596012,’B’,’20160719′);

29. Jordan Luplow, OF/3B, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(656669,’B’,’20160719′);

30. JT Brubaker, RHP, Bradenton -[insert_php] display_top30(664141,’P’,’20160719′);

P2 Top Performers

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INDIANAPOLIS — One name is not going to be circulated as a potential call-up candidate for the Pirates anytime soon: Wilfredo Boscan.

He needed a good outing and had the opposite. Boscan lasted just two innings against Lehigh Valley on Tuesday before being pulled. He was healthy but was lifted after two innings due to his performance, Indianapolis manager Dean Treanor said.

Boscan allowed five hits and four runs, but just one of those were earned. However, the one error that led to those runs being unearned was on Boscan.

The outing was the second-shortest of the season for Boscan and follows an equally bad performance in his last start when Boscan allowed six runs on eight hits in 3.2 innings against Louisville on July 14.

“To me he has to fight to get back to Pittsburgh,” Treanor said. “He has to show them that he is still a guy you can count on by going up there and helping them. He understands that.”

Boscan has been promoted by the Pirates three times this season, most recently spending one day on the Pirates roster before being sent back on June 21. And things haven’t gone well since that point. He’s allowed three earned runs or more in four of his five starts since returning to the Indians.

Treanor has tried some different things to get Boscan back on track. He had Francisco Cervelli, who was on a major league rehab assignment, catch Boscan during his start at Louisville on July 14. But Boscan allowed six runs on eight hits.

“His stuff just wasn’t the same the other night and Cervelli even said that,” Treanor said. “I thought it would be helpful for him to have Cervelli catch him. It wasn’t one of his better days.”

On Tuesday against Lehigh Valley, it took a couple of batters before things started to get out of control. Boscan struck out lead-off hitter Emmanuel Burriss, and J.P. Crawford lined out to Alen Hanson in left field. But three consecutive two-out singles — from Nick Williams, Darin Ruf, and Andrew Knapp — led to a run scoring in the first inning.

In the top of the second, Cameron Perkins, a Triple-A all-star, led off with a double over centerfielder Pedro Florimon. Boscan compounded that pitching mistake with a fielding mistake during the next at-bat. Lehigh Valley’s Darnell Sweeney hit a ball back to Boscan, who tried to throw Perkins out at third base. But his throw was well wide of third baseman Jason Rogers, which allowed Perkins to score.

Sweeney later scored on a sacrifice fly after advancing on a sacrifice bunt. But with two outs, Boscan walked Crawford. And Williams followed by drilling an RBI double off the rightfield wall.

Indianapolis endured its second consecutive game of almost no offensive production. The Indians had just five hits and scored one run, which is actually an increase from the previous game.

Jose Osuna led the ninth inning off with a pinch-hit single, his second consecutive game with a pinch hit. He scored on Jason Rogers’ two-out RBI single to left field. That broke a 17-inning scoreless streak. Josh Bell, Pedro Florimon, and Willy Garcia also had a hit.

Lehigh Valley starting pitcher David Buchanan nearly pitched a shutout, pitching 8.2 innings and allowing just five hits and the RBI single from Rogers.

A group of four Indianapolis relievers — Josh Outman, Curtis Partch, Dovydas Neverauskas, and Kyle Lobstein — put together a nice group effort in relief, not allowing a run over the final seven innings. They allowed four hits and no runs over the final seven innings.

Elias Diaz went 0-for-4 in his first game with Indianapolis as his rehab continues. Treanor said he does not have a specific schedule for Diaz, but he won’t catch in Wednesday’s day game.

Ryan Vogelsong will start for the Indians on Wednesday in a rehab game. He will be on a 90-95 pitch limit, Treanor said. – Brian Peloza 


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ALTOONA, PA – Kevin Newman was the story of the game today in Altoona for the Curve, as he had three hits, including his first Double-A home run and a couple of line drive singles. Newman’s third inning home run was a solo shot to left field that just made it out of the ballpark into the bleachers.

“It kind of just ran into my bat and made it out,” Newman said, “thankfully.”

After Newman’s 17-game hitting streak ended two games before the All Star break, he went on a slight slump, going 0-for-12 during a three game span. He had three hits over the weekend to get back in the swing of things, then he completely broke out today. Other than the home run, he connected extremely well on his two line drive hits. The homer was the best part of the day, though.

“I’m just looking to run into it every once in a while,” Newman said after the game. “With how my swing is and what I try to do up there, home runs are accidents. I’ll just try to hit low line drives, and home runs will happen every now and then. I’m just glad he didn’t catch it.”

Newman is now hitting .333 with an ..838 OPS in Double-A.

Besides Newman, Barrett Barnes and Harold Ramirez both extended their respective hitting streaks to 11 games. Ramirez had a couple of ground ball singles, while Barnes had a double down the left field line in the fourth.

Reese McGuire added two hits for the Curve, but he popped out to the shortstop on the first pitch he saw in the fifth inning with the bases loaded. It was a situation where it seemed McGuire should have worked the count a little, as the pitcher was getting taxed and just was visited by his coach at the mound. Swinging at the first pitch is something that McGuire has tended to do often this season, and his strikeout numbers are really good seemingly as a result.

Edwin Espinal had a tough game, as he struck out swinging on three separate occasions. He did benefit from an infield single in the fifth inning (which loaded the bases), but his swing looked a little slow and out of sync.

On the pitching side, the pitchers that represented Altoona in the 2016 Eastern League All Star Game have not fared well since the Double-A mid-summer game. Both Tyler Eppler and Jared Lakind allowed two earned runs in their respective inning of work in the All Star Game, and the runs haven’t stopped since.

Eppler allowed five runs in 6.2 innings of work, with three of those runs as a result of the long ball. The Rockies number three prospect Ryan McMahon took Eppler deep to lead off the second inning, and Hartford third baseman Pat Valaika took Eppler way deep to left field in the seventh inning. McMahon took the first pitch of the second inning over the right field wall almost to the roller coaster at PNG Field’s next door amusement park neighbor. Valaika’s homer was absolutely crushed over the left field bleachers, and it came off of a 78 MPH hanging curveball.

Eppler’s fastball had decent velocity today, sitting between 93-95 MPH into the seventh inning. He just wasn’t able to keep the ball down today, and the Hartford hitters hit the ball deep in the air on multiple occasions.

Jared Lakind struggled greatly in relief, as every batter that came to the plate against him got a hit. He allowed the double at the end of the seventh (which led to an out at home), then he gave up five straight hits in the eighth inning. He allowed two runs in a loss over the weekend, and then he was responsible for five earned runs in 1/3 of an inning tonight.

As for that out at the plate, Hartford’s first baseman Ryan McMahon hit a line drive down the right field line. Right fielder Stetson Allie got to the ball right on top of the Curve’s bullpen. As he was slipping, Allie fired away to Erich Weiss standing on the edge of the grass, who relayed home for the out. It was Allie’s fourth outfield assist of the year, a number that is pretty low for the strong armed right fielder. It seems like teams are not running on his as much.

The defeat goes as Altoona’s fourth loss in a row, starting with the second of a doubleheader against Harrisburg last Friday. The last time the Curve lost four in a row was back in late April. Since then, Altoona has climbed the standings to take a half game lead over Harrisburg in the Eastern League’s Western Division; however, they have shown signs of struggles over this past weekend.

In an interesting note, Altoona was actually the away team today even though the game was played at home. Hartford’s home stadium has been under construction, so they have had to play all of their games on the road this season. This quick three game series, therefore, is technically a home series for the Yard Goats.

The Curve and the Yard Goats will play a double header tomorrow at PNG Field beginning at 1 PM, and the games are free to attend if you are in town. -Sean McCool


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Bradenton won 6-5 over Clearwater on a walk-off single from Jerrick Suiter in the bottom of the ninth. This game was a back-and-forth affair with Bradenton having the lead three times, then Clearwater coming back to either tie them, or take the lead themselves.

Buddy Borden made the start and he hasn’t had an easy time adjusting back to the starting role since rejoining the Pirates. He now has a 6.98 ERA in five starts after allowing two earned runs over three innings in this game. He was removed early due to his high pitch count, reaching 70 pitches in his limited work. Junior Lopez followed him and managed to give up just one run over 3.2 innings despite allowing eight base runners. Tanner Anderson picked up the win with one run over the final 2.1 innings.

Connor Joe and Jordan Luplow each drove in a pair of runs in this game. Joe had three hits, including his 19th double. Luplow had two hits, including his 16th double. He also drew a pair of walks. Tito Polo had a single, walk, scored two runs and stole his 27th base of the season.


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West Virginia has off on Tuesday.


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Morgantown won 6-4 on Tuesday night, taking advantage of some Williamsport errors early in the game. James Marvel made his seventh start and picked up a career-high seven strikeouts. He gave up two runs on four hits and a walk over six innings of work. He now has a 3.78 ERA in 33.1 innings. Marvel had a 9:2 GO/AO ratio in this game and he has an impressive 2.21 ratio on the season.

Will Craig continued his recent streak of getting base, going 1-for-3 with a walk and a double. He has reached base 11 times in the last five games and he now has a .680 OPS. Unfortunately, the defense isn’t going well yet, with two more errors tonight to give him eight on the season in 15 games at third base.

Ty Moore reached base three times, though he had to leave after the last time. He singled, walked and then was hit by a pitch on the forearm in the seventh inning. He will have it checked out tomorrow. Hunter Owen connected on a two-run homer in the seventh inning, his fourth of the season. He also picked up his first stolen base.

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Bristol got some great pitching from two late round draft picks in their 3-0 victory over Bluefield. Starter Matt Eckelman (21st round) threw five shutout innings for the second time in three starts. He allowed three hits, didn’t walk anyone and struck out six batters. Eckelman was in the bullpen to begin the season, then took over in the rotation for Adam Oller, the 20th round pick. It was Oller who took over for him in this game, and he pitched just as well. In his four shutout innings, the only base runner he allowed was on a single. He picked up four strikeouts. In his last outing, Oller threw four shutout innings and picked up seven strikeouts.

On the offensive side, Bristol got some help from Bluefield errors. In the fifth, Huascar Fuentes walked, then scored on a Brent Gibbs double. In the eighth, Raul Siri led off with an infield single. Then three batters and three errors later, the Pirates had a 3-0 lead. Siri went 2-for-2 with a walk. Adrian Valerio hit his seventh double and scored a run.


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The GCL Pirates just needed to bring in some ringers if they wanted to beat the 18-3 Blue Jays team that is well out ahead of every other team in the league in the standings. Nick Kingham made his third rehab start and threw four shutout innings, while Justin Topa made his first appearance since 2014 and also added a shutout inning, as the Pirates exploded for eight runs in the sixth inning on their way to an 11-1 win.

Kingham allowed two hits, though they both went for extra bases. He worked around a two-out double in the first and a one-out triple in the second inning. He struck out the next two batters after the triple. Kingham had three strikeouts in the game and didn’t walk a batter. He will be increased to five innings in his next start.

Justin Topa had his second Tommy John surgery last April, so his recovery has been slower than normal. He last pitched for West Virginia in 2014. Topa came on in the fifth inning and retired the side in order.

Next up was 18-year-old Vince Deyzel from South Africa, who threw three shutout frames in his longest outing as a pro. He has had a couple shaky outings, but he has been working on getting the ball down in the zone more, which he credits for today’s success.

“I was throwing mostly fastballs today,” Deyzel said. “My pitches were just more downhill and I was throwing more strikes today pounding the zone, which helped me set up batters to use my slider for the strikeouts.”

The Pirates had just one run through the first five innings and that came on a steal of home by Mikell Granberry. In the sixth, they broke the game open, putting up eight runs on five hits, two walks and two errors. Granberry has been off to a slow start this season, hitting .224/.229/.373 after today’s game in which he went 2-for-3 with a single, double and a sacrifice fly. He talked about working though the struggle and what went right today.

“I am working on getting my load in time and in my step attacking the ball, which helps a lot with the recognition of the fastball and off-speed pitches,” Granberry said. “I was aggressive at the plate [today]. If they gave me the pitch that I was looking for early in the count, I was swinging.”

Granberry likes to use the middle of the field when he hits. He was having trouble recognizing pitches this season, which has led to a lot of strikeouts. Part of the problem was setting up too late, which he has been working on as he pointed out in the answer. He was behind fastballs and trying to adjust by committing earlier, which ended up with him chasing a lot of bad pitches and the strikeouts piled up. With the adjustment, it should allow him to see the ball longer before starting his swing. That should help him lay off some bad pitches and be aggressive on good pitches in his zone.

Edison Lantigua returned to the lineup, showing no ill-effects from the hand injury that caused him to leave Saturday’s game early. He had some issues with the hand last year, so his quick return and success are good signs. He had two hits, drove in two runs and scored twice.


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The DSL Pirates had an ugly 7-1 loss to the Mets1 on Tuesday. They committed four errors, had three runners thrown out on the bases and 15 strikeouts. They weren’t out of the game until the eighth inning though, trailing 2-1 after Carlos Garcia drove in their only run with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the seventh, scoring Cristopher Perez.

Starter Adonis Pichardo allowed two runs over 4.2 innings. He had a nice 8:2 GO/AO ratio in this game, but he was hurt by six hits and two hits batters. Randy Jimenez followed him and threw 2.1 shutout innings, with the only runners against him reaching on two errors. He kept the Pirates in the game, then Eumir Sepulveda knocked them out. He gave up five runs in his only inning of work.

The offense had five hits and three walks, but as mentioned above, three runners were thrown out on the bases, so they didn’t have many runners in scoring position. Williams Calderon had a double and a walk. Third-string catcher Yair Babilonia had a single and a walk. Larry Alcime, Cristopher Perez and Samuel Inoa had the other hits for the Pirates, all singles.

  • If Newman continues to hit like this through the end of the season does he start next season in Indy?

    I know others have said he needs to work on his defense, but man the bat is intriguing.

    I’ve seen him a couple of times since he’s moved up to Altoona and he rarely has a bad at bat.

    • John Dreker
      July 20, 2016 1:26 am

      I assume he will start in Indianapolis next year and possibly be available whenever/if they need him in the second half

      • Could he possibly get an Indy callup come playoff time ala Austin Meadows…

        • John Dreker
          July 20, 2016 9:59 am

          That’s possible, although Altoona has a much better playoff shot right now, so he would likely stay there

  • Wow, Ramirez had 2 hits then was picked off and caught stealing!. Rough night on the base path for him.

    • Whenever you see a pick-off and caught stealing, it’s almost always a MiLB glitch that they won’t fix. It means that the pitcher threw the ball to first and the first baseman got the out at second base. That’s a caught stealing because he ran to the next base, but they always credit the catcher with an assist and he wasn’t any part of the play. I’ve told them about it, but they have been doing it wrong for 10+ years now, so….

    • I’ve seen games where he is picked off returning to first base and caught stealing on another point in the game- so it wouldnt be the first…..or second time unfortunately if it actually occurred,

  • piraterican21
    July 19, 2016 9:00 pm

    McGuire seems to be picking it up as of late, Ditto for Barnes, meanwhile Newman it’s making mistakes.

  • With Brault, Kuhl and now Williams adding depth there really isn’t any heed to rush Kingham right now. We will hopefully see him sometime end of next summer.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    July 19, 2016 8:31 pm

    Encouraging news on Kingham – if he finishes this season strong, he could be in the starting rotation mix next Spring – if he can overcome NH being the GM.

  • Wonder if it might be time for Kingham to to Altoona or Indy and pitch against a little better competition

    • BuccosFanStuckinMD
      July 19, 2016 8:32 pm

      I would think he will move up gradually – maybe Bradenton in High A would be the next stop, since he’s already pitching in the GCL in Bradenton.

    • He’s on a 4 inning limit.

      • Yep -,but maybe those four innings shoul be against better competition?

        • That’s not a good idea right now. He’s building up. It’s all about innings and building up the pitch count gradually right now. The last thing he needs is to rush up to Double-A and get bounced after one bad inning. It’s best to face the easy competition now, while he’s building up. Then advance from there and try to compete, gradually moving up through the system.

          Taillon did the same thing last year. He just did it in extended Spring Training, so it wasn’t as public. He was about to make his five inning start when he had the hernia injury. Holmes also built up vs GCL guys before going to Altoona.

        • I agree that he should be pitching vs tougher competition than the GCL.

          • John Dreker
            July 20, 2016 1:29 am

            As Tim pointed out, they aren’t trying to challenge him, they are trying to let him get his work in. The last thing you want is him reaching his pitch limit early and leaving the game. That’s counter-productive. Once he is built up, then you move him up and challenge him. There is zero rush to get him to higher levels this year. You want to make sure he gets his work in this season, so he has more innings to build on next year.

      • 5 inning limit. He just hasn’t reached that yet. Next time is his first outing going five.

    • yeah, he looks healthy enuff for me. OTOH, if he just reestablishes himself as a healthy arm that can throw Stuff 2016 becomes good. Normally this would be his 6th year but I have to assume the Bucs got another control year due to his pitching only a few starts last spring. Shame is/blessing is, Brault, Williams and obviously Kuhl, Taillon and Glasnow have leapfrogged him on the prospect chart so… don’t rush him.

      • He had averaged 26 starts in the 3 years prior to the TJ and had done very well moving up through the system. Still only 24, and came back very quickly, so I agree with you that the Pirates will be very careful with him this year.

    • I’d let him at least get to five innings in the GCL. Then go from there.

    • He will make one more start in the GCL, going five innings. Then he’ll go to Bradenton for a few starts.