Prospect Watch: Strong Starts from Waddell, Vera and Schlabach

P2 Top 30

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 (Colin Moran, Edgar Santana, Kyle Crick, Max Moroff and Dovydas Neverauskas), 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 our 2018 Prospect Guide, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

1. Mitch Keller, RHP, Altoona – DNP

2. Austin Meadows, CF, Pirates – In Majors

3. Cole Tucker, SS, Altoona – 2-for-5, SB

4. Shane Baz, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP

5. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Altoona – 0-for-4, BB

6. Kevin Newman, SS, Indianapolis – 1-for-3, BB

7. Taylor Hearn, LHP, Altoona – DNP

8. Lolo Sanchez, CF, West Virginia – 1-for-2, 3B

9. Bryan Reynolds, OF, Altoona – 2-for-4

10. Jordan Luplow, LF, Indianapolis – 1-for-5

11. Luis Escobar, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

12. Clay Holmes, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

13. Braeden Ogle, LHP, West Virginia – DNP

14. Nick Kingham, RHP, Pirates – In Majors

15. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Indianapolis – 1-for-3, 2B, RBI

16. Adrian Valerio, SS, Bradenton – 1-for-5

17. Calvin Mitchell, OF, West Virginia – 3-for-7, 2B, RBI, BB

18. Oneil Cruz, SS, West Virginia – 4-for-8, 2B, HR, 3 RBI, SB

19. Nick Burdi, RHP, Pirates (disabled list) – DNP

20. Dario Agrazal, RHP, Altoona – DNP

21. JT Brubaker, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

22. Will Craig, 1B, Altoona – 1-for-5

23. Stephen Alemais, 2B/SS, Altoona – 1-for-3, 2B, RBI

24. Jason Martin, OF, Altoona – 1-for-5, 2B, RBI

25. Brandon Waddell, LHP, Indianapolis – 5.2 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 SO

26. Eduardo Vera, RHP, Altoona –  7 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 SO

27. Mason Martin, 1B, West Virginia – 1-for-7, 2B, BB, RBI

28. Conner Uselton, OF, Extended Spring Training – DNP

29. Cody Bolton, RHP, West Virginia – DNP

30. Steven Jennings, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP


Indianapolis won 5-0 over Rochester.

Brandon Waddell made his second start since being promoted to Indianapolis. His first was a tough one, getting knocked out of the game in the second inning with five earned runs allowed. This was a terrific bounce back, going 5.2 shutout innings on four hits and two walks, with five strikeouts. He threw 51 of 90 pitches for strikeouts and had a 7:3 GO/AO ratio. Tanner Anderson continued his great season with 1.1 shutout frames, stranding two inherited runners. Josh Smoker and Casey Sadler each tossed a scoreless inning.

On offense, Jose Osuna had two hits and drove in two runs. Kevin Newman had a single, walk and two runs scored. Christopher Bostick had two walks, a single and a run scored. Eric Wood hit his 17th double and drove in a run. Jacob Stallings hit his 13th double and Kevin Kramer hit his tenth double. Max Moroff is 7-for-44 since being sent down.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


Altoona lost 4-2 to Reading on Tuesday.

Eduardo Vera made his second start since being promoted to Altoona. In his first game he allowed one earned run over seven innings. He wasn’t quite that good, but it was still a very strong start. In seven innings, he allowed two runs on six hits and one walk, with five strikeouts. Vera threw 66 of 93 pitches for strikes. It’s his tenth straight start of at least six innings and the sixth time he has gone at least seven innings.

Montana DuRapau made his second appearance since his suspension ended and he gave up two runs in the ninth for the loss.

Jin-De Jhang led the offense with three hits. Cole Tucker had two singles and stole his eighth base. Bryan Reynolds had two hits. Stephen Alemais hit his eighth double and drove in a run. Jason Martin hit his tenth double.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


Bradenton won 7-5 over Florida.

Jung Ho Kang played his fourth game and second at shortstop. He turned two double plays and has fielded cleanly in all four games. Kang reached base three times tonight, though he failed to get a hit. He had just one official at-bat. He walked twice and was hit by a pitch.

Jared Oliva, Bligh Madris, Lucas Tancas and Garrett Brown each had two hits. Tancas hit his first home run of the season. Oliva stole two bases to give him 17 steals on the year.

Mike Wallace got the start with both Eduardo Vera and Cam Vieaux being promoted to Altoona. Wallace had a strong outing, allowing two earned runs on seven hits and a walk, with five strikeouts and a 9:1 GO/AO ratio. Angel German came on to throw the seventh and was ejected after hitting a batter. Jordan Jess threw the last 2.2 innings for the save.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


West Virginia lost the opener of a doubleheader by a 7-4 score.

Max Kranick made his third start with West Virginia and ran into his first real trouble since joining them. He tossed four shutout innings before allowing three hits in a row in the fifth, with the last one being a home run. Kranick also surrendered a solo homer to lead-off the sixth. They left him in despite the struggles and things didn’t get any better, as the next three batters in the sixth reached base, with all three of those runners scoring off of Matt Seelinger. Kranick was charged with seven earned runs.

Oneil Cruz hit his eighth home run of the season, which gave the Power an early 2-0 lead. He also had a single and stole his fourth base. Rodolfo Castro was the only player in the lineup without a hit. Calvin Mitchell, who was named as an SAL All-Star earlier in the day, hit his 15th double. Deon Stafford is also an All-Star and he responded with a single and his tenth double. Mason Martin hit his eighth double. Lolo Sanchez hit his first triple of the season.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

In game two, Ike Schlabach got the spot start and made the most of his opportunity. He tossed five shutout innings on four hits and two walks, with eight strikeouts. He now has a 2.72 ERA in 39.2 innings, with 36 strikeouts. His previous career high was six strikeouts. Beau Sulser was out next and allowed a run in his only inning. Joel Cesar closed out the 10-1 victory with a scoreless ninth.

On offense, Oneil Cruz, Calvin Mitchell, Chris Sharpe and John Bormann in his season debut, each had two hits. Cruz collected his tenth double. Sharpe, Kyle Watson and Ben Bengtson each drove in a pair of runs. Sharpe, Bengtson and Mason Martin each scored a pair of runs. Due to three errors, just four of the runs by the Power were charged as earned runs.

Here’s the boxscore.

You can view the season preview here.


The DSL Pirates1 lost 13-6

Bryan Torres, who was the top pitcher signed during the 2017-18 international signing period, made his pro debut. He had a rough first inning, allowing three runs. He settled down over his final three innings and finished with seven strikeouts. In four frames, he allowed three runs on six hits and a walk. Jose Amaya was out next making his debut and he had a quiet fifth before allowing four runs (three earned) in the sixth. Relievers Starlyn Reynoso and Carlos Campos allowed another six runs over the final three innings.

Juan Pie, the top international signing for the Pirates in the DSL, tripled in his first game and homered yesterday in his second game. He tripled again today and added two singles, leaving him 5-for-11 with a walk in three games. Daniel Rivero had three hits and drove in two runs. Norkis Marcos had two hits and drove in a pair. Returning players from last year, Ronaldo Paulino and Ruben Gonzalez, each had two hits.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

The DSL Pirates2 lost 2-1 to the Tigers.

Lefty starter Francisco Hodge made his pro debut and tossed 3.2 scoreless innings on three hits and three walks, with three strikeouts. He was replaced by Braham Rosario, who signed on the same day as Hodge later in the signing period. Rosario recorded the final out of the fourth, stranding two runners. He went three more innings, allowing one run. Eddison Polonia had three strikeouts in the eighth inning, but he was a victim of an unearned run for the loss.

Outfielder Mario Jerez (signed as Mario Maldonado) went 2-for-2 with two walks and scored the lone run. Mariano Dotel went 1-for-3 with an RBI and a walk. Tilsaimy Melfor, Bryan Mateo and Pedro Castillo each singled for the only other hits.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview for both teams here.