One of the questions I get all of the time in regards to this site is “Are there any other teams that have a site like yours?” Actually, that’s usually a question that follows “What exactly do you do?” and “So do you work for the Pirates?” and “How does that work on your own?” and “Is this all that you do then?” and “How did you get into that?” and maybe a few other questions. But eventually it gets to “Are there any other teams that have a site like yours?”

The answer is no.

There are sites that cover prospects for other teams. There might be 4-5 that do this as a job. But there are none that do this as a job and have the constant live coverage of every level that we do.

I hear from scouts all the time that our site is the best team site out there for keeping track of every player. This often follows me introducing myself, and them knowing about the site before they even know who I am. I hear from national writers that if they’re looking for specific info on a player, they always know to check us first.

The downside to this is that this is something which can’t be seen by Pirates fans. Unless you’re hardcore into following prospects, and you try to get information from other teams, you’re not going to see the same thing that scouts and national writers see. So a lot of what we do has just come to be expected in the Pittsburgh area as normal coverage, and something that every team has.

There’s a recent example of how this isn’t standard with other teams. A week ago, Reese McGuire was placed on the disabled list for Toronto’s Double-A team. Two weeks ago, Harold Ramirez was placed on the same disabled list. I’ve seen that Pirates fans have noticed this, and I’ve even seen that some Pirates fans have wondered what the injury was.

I’ve been checking on that myself, to see if the information is out there. I checked a few Blue Jays prospect sites (the Jays Prospects site has one article per week), a few newspapers that cover the Blue Jays (some of them don’t even have that the players are injured), and anywhere else I can think of. I haven’t been able to find anything at all.

This is something that wouldn’t happen if the players were in the Pirates’ system. If those two were still in Altoona, we’d have Sean McCool there getting updates. If the players were on the road, we’d be in contact with people in the organization to get those updates. If they were rehabbing in Bradenton, we’d eventually have full details of the rehab, after getting the basic info first. And Altoona specifically has good media coverage aside from us, from Cory Giger and the Altoona Mirror, but that isn’t the case with every level. And in every other level we’ve got that coverage.

We go to the extreme with some of that news. We provided updates on 2016 draft picks Blake Cederlind and Brent Gibbs, and the large majority of Pirates fans don’t even realize those two are Pirates prospects yet. We had updates this year on why GCL shortstop Melvin Jimenez was out for a few games. Even hardcore readers of this site probably don’t know who he is.

I bring all of this up as part of a shameless plug for the site’s coverage, but also because when I hear from scouts and national writers, I always think “I wish there was a way Pirates fans could see this.” And with the McGuire/Ramirez trade being so high-profile, and with both of them facing unknown injuries shortly after the deal, I couldn’t think of a better time or example to show the difference of coverage between what we provide for the Pirates, and what is provided for other teams.

Live Coverage Updates

I just wrapped up two weeks of live coverage of the lower levels, with a series each in West Virginia, Morgantown, and Bristol. I’ve had a lot of features already from this coverage, and will have a lot more in the next few weeks. I currently have 12 features remaining from the trip, after posting over a dozen updates already.

I took a few days off to stop in Raleigh to visit some friends on the way home. My best friends just had twins, which is their second set of twins in a year. They now have two one year olds and two newborns. So I wrapped up my Bristol coverage on Tuesday, then went into Uncle Tim mode on Wednesday.

I’m heading home today, and resuming my live coverage in Bradenton tomorrow in the GCL. I’m hoping that the schedule will hold up, giving me a chance to see Blake Taylor, Hector Garcia, Braeden Ogle, and Austin Shields on Saturday and Monday. I’ll also be getting a look at new arrivals Jeremias Portorreal and Gabriel Brito, who I haven’t seen since last year in the DSL. So I’m looking forward to seeing how they’ve progressed in that time.

Next week the Marauders will return home, and I’ll be getting end of the year features on guys like Connor Joe, Kevin Kramer, and other hitters and pitchers who I haven’t updated lately. Right now, looking at our tentative schedule, we’ve got articles lined up through the end of September, and that doesn’t even include all of the articles from every writer we have.

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If you have any feedback, whether it’s a problem with your account, an issue with the site, or any other questions or comments, you can e-mail me at tim@piratesprospects.com.