Prospect Watch: Max Kranick Bounces Back with One-Hit Ball Over Seven Innings; Castro Hits 12th Homer

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 (Kevin Newman, Nick Burdi, Bryan Reynolds and Cole Tucker), 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 (Travis MacGregor), 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 updated 2019 Prospect Guide, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

1. Mitch Keller, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

2. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Indianapolis – 0-for-5, RBI

3. Oneil Cruz, SS, Bradenton – DNP

4. Travis Swaggerty, CF, Bradenton – DNP

5. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Indianapolis – 2-for-3, 2 2B, 2 RBI, BB

6. Will Craig, 1B, Indianapolis – 3-for-4, RBI

7. Jason Martin, OF, Indianapolis – 2-for-5

8. JT Brubaker, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

9. Calvin Mitchell, OF, Bradenton – DNP

10. Cody Bolton, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

11. Tahnaj Thomas, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP

12. Braxton Ashcraft, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP

13. Lolo Sanchez, CF, Greensboro – 2-for-5, RBI, BB, SB

14. Pablo Reyes, Util, Indianapolis – 0-for-4

15. Clay Holmes, RHP, Pirates – In Majors

16. Braeden Ogle, LHP, Greensboro – DNP

17. Stephen Alemais, 2B/SS, Altoona Out for the Season

18. Michael Burrows, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP

19. Jared Oliva, CF, Altoona – 0-for-4, BB, SB

20. Ji-Hwan Bae, SS, Greensboro – DNP

21. Max Kranick, RHP, Bradenton – 7.0 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 SO

22. Luis Escobar, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

23. Osvaldo Bido, RHP, Greensboro – DNP

24. Eduardo Vera, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

25. Gage Hinsz, RHP, Altoona – DNP

26. Aaron Shortridge, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

27. Blake Weiman, LHP, Altoona – DNP

28. Steven Jennings, RHP, Greensboro – DNP

29. Brandon Waddell, LHP, Indianapolis – DNP

30. Jesus Liranzo, RHP, Indianapolis – 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 SO


Indianapolis won 4-3 in ten innings over Louisville. Alex McRae got the start and nearly matched Mitch Keller’s performance last night against this same team. McRae went seven innings, allowing two runs on seven hits, with no walks and eight strikeouts. Both runs came on solo homers. He threw 64 of 92 pitches for strikes and had a 7:1 GO/AO ratio. McRae now has a 5.18 ERA in 48.2 innings. Jesus Liranzo retired the side in order quickly in the eighth, then Richard Rodriguez made his Triple-A debut in the ninth and gave up a game-tying homer. He allowed eight homers in 19.2 innings with the Pirates. Tyler Lyons threw a scoreless tenth for the save.

Will Craig had a strong game at the plate, getting things started with an RBI single in the first inning. He added two more singles later in the game and scored two runs. Kevin Kramer had RBI doubles in the first and third innings, both times scoring Craig. Kramer has 13 doubles on the season. He played shortstop for the second time in a row in this game. Ke’Bryan Hayes had an RBI ground out in the tenth with the bases loaded to bring home the winning run. He went 0-for-5 in the game. Jason Martin had two hits and a run scored.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


Altoona lost 2-1 to New Hampshire. Cam Vieaux had a strong outing, especially the first two times through the lineup. He faltered a little in the fifth inning, but still managed to go six innings, with two runs on eight hits, walking no one and striking out ten batters, which is a new career best. Blake Cederlind tossed two shutout innings. He has thrown 10.1 shutout innings since being promoted to Altoona, giving up just three hits. On the season, Cederlind has given up one run in 18 frames.

The offense was a solo homer by Jerrick Suiter in the sixth inning, his first of the season. Suiter had two hits, as did Arden Pabst, who collected his fifth double. The only other hit was a Mitchell Tolman single. Jared Oliva stole his eighth base of the season. The Curve went 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position and stranded ten base runners.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


Bradenton won 2-1 over Fort Myers. Max Kranick looked like the version of him that we saw in April. He allowed just one hit over seven innings, walking one, striking out three and getting through his night on just 66 pitches. Kranick gave up a solo homer in the second inning, with the batter going opposite way on a 95 MPH fastball that was high and on the outside corner. After that, the only other batter to reach base was on a walk and he was immediately erased on a double play. Kranick hit 97 MPH, which is the top velocity that’s he has reached in a few of his starts this year. He came into this game on a down streak of three games with 14 runs over 12.2 innings. That was after posting a 2.91 ERA in April. Gavin Wallace and Logan Stoelke each threw a scoreless frame to preserve the win.

The Marauders got their two runs on a sacrifice fly in the seventh, without any hits in the inning. After Daniel Amaral and Dylan Busby walked, they were bunted into scoring position. Chase Lambert then lifted a fly ball to right field and the outfielder tried to get the slow-footed Busby at third base, but the throw got by the third baseman and the pitcher backing up, which allowed Busby to score. The Marauders had just four hits, with two being singles by Deon Stafford, one of which was hit about 45 feet. Lambert doubled. Amaral stole his sixth base.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.

Greensboro won 17-7 over West Virginia. Alex Manasa gave up four runs (three earned) on six hits over six innings, with no walks and six strikeouts. He threw 66 of 91 pitches for strikes and posted a 10:0 GO/AO ratio. Manasa has already set a season best with 52 strikeouts, despite throwing 28.2 more innings last year when he struck out 46 batters in 80.1 innings. Cam Alldred followed and allowed three runs over the final three innings.

Rodolfo Castro had a big game, as the entire lineup contributed to the win. He drove in a run in the fourth inning on his tenth double of the season. In the ninth, he hit a three-run homer, his 12th of the season, which leads all Pirates. Castro has 30 RBIs this year.

Lolo Sanchez, Fabricio Macias, Mason Martin, Kyle Mottice, Justin Harrer and Grant Koch each had two hits. Macias collected his sixth home run and his fourth double. He scored three times, drove in a pair and drew a walk. Sanchez stole his 18th base. Martin picked up his 41st RBI, which leads the South Atlantic League. Mottice doubled and drew a walk, improving his slash line to .429/.571/.476 through 14 games. Harrer had two doubles, two runs and two RBIs.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.