A look at how the current top 30 prospects did today. If a player is in the majors for an extended time, or loses his prospect eligibility, he will be removed from this list. 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 more active prospects on the list. Rankings are from the 2017 Prospect Guide, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.
1. Austin Meadows, CF, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
2. Mitch Keller, RHP, Bradenton – [insert_php]
3. Kevin Newman, SS, Altoona – [insert_php]
4. Cole Tucker, SS, Bradenton – [insert_php]
5. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Bradenton -[insert_php]
6. Will Craig, 3B, Bradenton – [insert_php]
7. Taylor Hearn, LHP, Bradenton – [insert_php]
8. Gage Hinsz, RHP, Bradenton – [insert_php]
9. Nick Kingham, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
10. Steven Brault, LHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
11. Clay Holmes, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
12. Braeden Ogle, LHP, Bristol – [insert_php]
13. Max Kranick, RHP, GCL Pirates – [insert_php]
14. Elias Diaz, C, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
15. Edgar Santana, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
16. Luis Escobar, RHP, West Virginia – [insert_php]
17. Dovydas Neverauskas, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
18. Yeudy Garcia, RHP, Altoona -[insert_php]
19. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Altoona -[insert_php]
20. Tyler Eppler, RHP, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
21. Stephen Alemais, SS, West Virginia – [insert_php]
22. Brandon Waddell, LHP, Altoona – [insert_php]
23. Travis MacGregor, RHP, Bristol – [insert_php]
24. Barrett Barnes, LF, Indianapolis -[insert_php]
25. Max Moroff, 2B, Pirates -[insert_php]
26. Eric Wood, 3B, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
27. J.T. Brubaker, RHP, Altoona – [insert_php]
28. Chris Bostick, INF/OF, Indianapolis – [insert_php]
29. Connor Joe, 3B, Altoona – [insert_php]
30. Jin-De Jhang, C, Altoona – [insert_php]
INDIANAPOLIS — Tyler Eppler had some good innings, but he also had a few rough moments and that sums up his last month-and-a-half.
There were flashes of efficiency against Louisville, retiring the side in order in two innings. Eppler also retired eight batters in a row at one point.
But there was also the second inning when Eppler allowed three runs on three singles, a triple and a walk. He also allowed a solo home run to Darnell Sweeney in the fourth inning.
The problem was simple: Eppler didn’t have good fastball command, Indianapolis manager Andy Barkett said.
“His fastball command wasn’t there today and he wasn’t able to establish fastball on both sides of the plate to set up his offspeed pitches,” Barkett said. “He did have some efficient innings and got back into some counts, but overall there wasn’t enough fastball command for him to be consistent.”
Eppler rebounded quickly from allowing three runs in the second inning, retiring the side in order on seven pitches in the third inning. He retired Louisville’s 3-4-5 hitters on a bunt attempt and two popouts. That efficiency continued into the fourth inning, when Eppler retired the side on 12 pitches.
Louisville loaded the bases in the sixth inning on a hit-by-pitch, Chad Wallach single and an infield single from pitcher Amir Garrett, though Indianapolis second baseman Christopher Bostick made a nice diving stop on Garrett’s hit to keep the ball from getting into the outfield and allowing a run to score. Eppler got out of the jam by inducing Sweeney to fly out.
“I just made some poor pitches that got hit around,” Eppler said. “When I’ve had guys on base I’ve been trying to make those perfect pitches instead of just sticking to my game and pitching. That’s what’s been killing me lately: trying to do too much and making too fine of a pitch, and leaving one over the plate.”
Indianapolis scored four runs in the sixth inning to take a 5-4 lead. Jordan Luplow and Joey Terdoslavich each had an RBI double, while Erich Weiss had a two-run, pinch-hit single.
Montana DuRapau made his Triple-A debut, entering in the seventh with Indianapolis ahead 5-4. He retired the side on two pop-outs and a strikeout of Brandon Dixon.
DuRapau was sitting 93 MPH with his fastball and touched 94 once.
“I like the kid and the kid knows how to pitch,” Barkett said. “He’s got some intestinal fortitude and he’s not afraid. I’m a big fan and looking forward to him helping our bullpen and picking up where (Josh) Lindblom left off.
Indianapolis reliever Edgar Santana had his first blown save of the season, allowing a pair of doubles in the ninth inning that gave Louisville a 6-5 lead.
Elias Diaz made two nice plays on pair of dribblers towards the pitching mound. Santana fielded the first one and threw to first, which necessitated Diaz to slide to the ground to avoid getting in Santana’s throw. The Louisville runner tried to score from third on the play, but Diaz jumped back up and caught the throw home to tag the runner out. He also made a nice play on the second dribbler of the inning, making an awkward throw after quickly fielding the hit.
Starling Marte was 3-for-5 with an bunt single, single and double in his final rehab game with Indianapolis before rejoining the Pirates on Tuesday. He was thrown out trying to stretch his double into a triple.
Marte hit .333 (12-for-36) with Indianapolis on his rehab.
“I think he’s ready to go,” Barkett said. “It’s been a long road for him and I think he’s got enough at-bats here to have some timing. It looked today like he could have played in the big leagues and played well.” – Brian Peloza
ALTOONA, Pa. – Tanner Anderson made his 17th start of the season, and it has been a great one so far for the right handed sinkerballer. Anderson has the best ground ball rate in all of Double-A baseball at 61.3%, and he had the second-best FIP in the Eastern League (3.18) entering tonight’s game. He’s also had 4.00 ground balls to every fly ball, which is 1.09 more than any other pitcher in Double-A baseball (second best is 2.91 GB/FB). Needless to say, Anderson has been effective at getting the ball on the ground.
Tonight, Anderson continued to get the ball on the ground for the majority of his outing; however, Bowie scattered five runs against him, with a two-run homer in the seventh being the nail in the coffin. He did match a career high in strikeouts with eight, but Bowie was able to sneak too many balls through the infield and took advantage of some spotty defense for the Curve.
Bowie jumped Anderson early in the first inning, as it did not look like he was as sharp as usual early in the game. His control was spotty in the first, and Bowie didn’t necessarily hit the ball hard against him, but they were able to get two quick runs on the board. He settled down after that until the seventh inning, when he was pulled after giving up the home run and double. He threw 109 pitches, only two outings after throwing 110 pitches in eight scoreless innings against Binghamton.
Anderson had only given up three home runs this season before tonight, with two of those being against this same Bowie team a few weeks ago. That first start against Bowie for Anderson was arguably his worst start of the season, so it’s easy to say that the Baysox have his number.
The encouraging part of his outing tonight were the strikeouts. He used both fastballs and breaking balls to get batters out on strikes, and they were usually of the swinging variety. On a few instances, it looked like Anderson had the batter completely fooled on the strikeout pitch. He is only averaging 5.4 K/9 this season, so a night like tonight is good to see. If Anderson can continue to get the opposition to pound the ball into the ground, as well as add a few more strikeouts to his resume, he could become an even more noteworthy pitcher in the Pirates’ system.
Jake Brentz relieved Anderson in the seventh. He came out for the eighth inning and gave up a lead-off walk. During the next at-bat, the batter lined a ball to the right side, and Brentz went down in a heap after the play. It looked as thought he hurt his knee, and Michael Ryan said after the game that his leg got caught and buckled. He will be evaluated later.
Miguel Rosario had to come in to relieve Brentz, and he did not look right at all. Rosario had very little control, but it’s not worth taking much stock in his performance because of him having to warm up quickly on the field after Brentz’s injury.
From the offensive side, there was nothing really happening tonight for the Curve. Tomas Morales was the only player with multiple hits, and he had two singles. When your lineup has four hitters who started the game batting under .200, there honestly can’t be much to expect offensively.
The Curve lost this one to Bowie, 9-1. They dropped three out of four to the now first place Bowie team, and they fall to two games back in the divisional race. Although Anderson’s line doesn’t reflect it, they got decent starting pitching all series against a very good offensive powerhouse. There were some hiccups from their bullpen, but overall, they can take a lot from this series and hopefully build on it down the road. -Sean McCool
Bradenton lost 4-3 on Sunday to Dunedin. Gage Hinsz started after pitching in relief earlier this week. That hasn’t worked out well for anyone this season, but the Pirates continue to use starting pitchers in the bullpen to give them rest. Hinsz didn’t have a horrible start, but he came into the game with a 2.10 ERA since the FSL All-Star break a month ago. He went six innings, allowing three runs on six hits and three walks. The bad part was that he has zero strikeouts, but he made up for that with an impressive 10:2 GO/AO ratio. Five of the six hits against him went for extra bases, so Dunedin was making some good contact in between all of the grounders.
Ke’Bryan Hayes connected on his first home run of the season. He finished the day 3-for-5, finishing a triple shy of the cycle. Will Craig had two singles and drove in a run. Cole Tucker was 1-for-5 with a run scored. Kevin Krause and Alfredo Reyes each had two hits. Jordan George celebrated his 25th birthday with a single and a walk. Alexis Bastardo picked up two outfield assists.
West Virginia lost 7-3 to Greensboro on Sunday. James Marvel started and had a tough first couple batters, then a tough final few batters, with not much in between. Marvel walked the lead-off batter, then allowed a triple and an RBI ground out to make it a 2-0 score just three batters into the game. A third run scored in the second inning on a walk, infield single, sacrifice bunt and ground out. He looked like he would get through five innings with three runs allowed, but Garrett Brown dropped a two out fly ball with the bases loaded, which allowed all three runners to score. That ended Marvel’s day and gave Greensboro all of the runs they would need.
The Power had 14 base runners, but they couldn’t put together any big innings, scoring solo runs in the fifth, sixth and eighth innings. Adrian Valerio had three hits, though he was left stranded on base each time. Hunter Owen had a streak of six games with a double coming into today. That was lost, but he did connect on his tenth home run and he was hit by a pitch for the 24th time. Carlos Munoz hit his 18th double. Arden Pabst had two hits and an RBI.
Morgantown lost 7-2 to Staten Island on Sunday. Gavin Wallace started and allowed five runs on seven hits in 4.2 innings. All of the damage came during the fifth inning, when the Yankees put together six hits off Wallace to chase him from the game. Adam Oller stranded an inherited runner in the fifth, then allowed a run of his own in the sixth. The Yankees capped off their scoring with a solo homer off of Joel Cesar in the ninth. That was just the third hit allowed by Cesar in eight appearances and it was a tough pitch to hit out. A left-handed batter turned on a shoulder high fastball, which is usually in the 94-96 MPH range from Cesar.
Morgantown didn’t have much on offense outside of catcher Raul Hernandez, who was making his debut with the team after being promoted from Bristol a few days ago. He collected three of their seven hits, including his first double. Raul Siri had a double and run scored. Brett Pope had an RBI single. The 1-4 hitters, consisting of Chris Sharpe, Bligh Madris, Jared Oliva and Tristan Gray, combined to go 1-for-15.
Bristol got Jacob Taylor back after two missed starts due to a back injury, but the hard-throwing lefty didn’t last long in this game. Taylor faced seven hitters and allowed five hits, one walk and hit one batter. All seven runs came around to score as part of a ten-run inning by Princeton. He threw 26 pitches, with 15 going for strikes. Evan Piechota finished the first inning, but not before giving up three runs of his own. He then went two scoreless innings before giving way to 11th round draft pick Alex Manasa in the fourth inning. Manasa went three frames, giving up two runs on three hits. He now has a 6.94 ERA through six appearances.
The Pirates didn’t give up on offense because they were down big in the first inning. The final score was 12-9 and Johan De Jesus drove in four of those runs with a double and a triple. Ben Bengtson hit his first pro home run, a two-run shot in the first inning. Henrry Rosario drove in two runs on a triple and a sacrifice fly. Edison Lantigua had a walk and a run scored on an 0-for-4 day.
The GCL Pirates are off on Sundays.
The DSL Pirates are off this weekend for the DSL All-Star game.