During the middle of Thursday’s afternoon game against the Atlanta Braves, Bryan Reynolds recorded his 131st Major League at-bat. According to the standards we use for our Prospect Guide, that means he is no longer a prospect, therefore won’t be in any future editions of the guide or on any top prospect lists. When you’re talking about a sample size of 131 at-bats, it’s rather small compared to how much someone could play over the course of a full season. That being said, Reynolds has had quite the start to his big league time.
At the end of the day yesterday, Reynolds had a .346/.404/.549 slash line in 146 plate appearances over 41 games. Some of you may have seen the tweet from MLB Pipeline two days ago about Reynolds and Cole Tucker graduating from their top 30 list. They use the MLB rules for rookies as well, so a player could drop from the list with 45 big league days, as long as none of them happened in September/October. Clay Holmes is also off of their list, but still needs to either pitch 9.2 more innings or make 12 more appearances, whichever comes first, to be dropped from our list. Tucker is 20 at-bats short for us still.
Mentioning Reynolds dropping off of the list now is great timing because the list is going to be getting stronger very soon, as each draft pick signs (bookmark our draft tracker). On top of the draft picks, there will also be players over from the Dominican Summer League, who play their first games in the U.S. Those two groups will add numerous players to our top 50, making the depth stronger. You have to wonder though, just how much stronger will it be compared to the start of the season?
Right now, the only two players to graduate from our list since the start of the season are Bryan Reynolds and Kevin Newman. The problem is that they represent 20% of our top ten list, and that’s really were the farm system rankings come from for most people. If you have a great top ten and horrible depth after that, your farm system is still going to rank high. Newman ranked seventh and Reynolds ranked eighth in our book. If Tucker loses his prospect status before our mid-season update, which I’m still on the fence about with Dickerson about to return and Kang not far behind (while also playing shortstop), then the system will really take a hit.
I don’t see a potential top ten prospect about to debut over from the Dominican. You have a trio of highly touted outfielders in Angel Basabe, Juan Pie and Daniel Rivero, but if they end up in the top ten, it will happen down the line, not in late July.
I haven’t put a second of thought yet into where first round pick Quinn Priester will end up, and I’m fighting the urge to do that as I type this sentence, but most first round picks are top ten prospects right away. He definitely wasn’t an overdraft, so it seems safe to say he makes the list. After him though, I don’t see it with other players. I like Sammy Siani, he was in our tiered draft rankings, but as a second round talent with some questions about his power, we will need to see him answer those questions first. I think he’s the second best prospect they took, so no one else should leapfrog him during a short-season league in pro ball.
The thing about prospect lists is they look more towards the future. Bryan Reynolds was still on it for more than half of yesterday. He had two hits in the game, so his value as a player obviously didn’t go down. He’s now just grouped with the Major League players instead. The farm system takes a hit, but the young controllable talent is exactly the same. He still has six full seasons after this year before he’s a free agent and he’s playing well. That’s something more important than the next potential Bryan Reynolds in the farm system, though it’s still nice to know who that player could be.
Altoona is in fourth place in their division, 8.5 games back with 13 games remaining in the first half.
Bradenton is in a two-way tie for first place with ten games remaining in the first half.
Greensboro is in second place in their division, six games back with 11 games remaining in the schedule.
Today’s Starter and Notes: The Pittsburgh Pirates won 6-1 over the Atlanta Braves on Thursday afternoon. They now travel to Milwaukee for three games, which is the start of a ten-day, ten-game road trip. The Pirates will send out Rookie Davis for his first Major League start since 2017. He has made four appearances for the Pirates, giving up five runs over 7.2 innings, on eight hits (two homers), with three walks and eight strikeouts. The Brewers will counter with 26-year-old right-hander Brandon Woodruff, who has a 3.82 ERA in 68.1 innings, with 80 strikeouts and a 1.20 WHIP. His last start was in Pittsburgh six days ago when he served up six runs on ten hits over four innings. His prior start was one-hit ball over eight innings, with no walks and ten strikeouts.
The minor league schedule includes Mitch Keller making his second start for Indianapolis since his big league debut. On Saturday, he allowed two runs on three hits, with two walks and five strikeouts, in six innings. Keller started against Toledo (today’s opponent) in April and allowed one run over 5.1 innings. Max Kranick gets the start for Bradenton. He has pitched into the seventh inning in each of his last three starts. Batters are hitting .229 against him this year
Alex Manasa will start game one of a doubleheader for Greensboro. He has allowed exactly three earned runs in five of his last six starts. Conner Loeprich will start the second game. His only start this season was also during a doubleheader against Lakewood, and he allowed four runs over four innings. Sean Brady will start for Altoona. After giving up ten runs over 11 innings in his first two starts with the Curve, Brady has allowed five runs over 19.2 innings in his last three outings.
MLB: Pittsburgh (30-31) @ Brewers (35-28) 8:10 PM
Probable starter: Rookie Davis (5.87 ERA, 8:3 SO/BB, 7.2 IP)
AAA: Indianapolis (34-23) @ Toledo (23-34) 7:05 PM (season preview)
Probable starter: Mitch Keller (3.40 ERA, 61:22 SO/BB, 53.0 IP)
AA: Altoona (27-29) vs Akron (30-28) 7:00 PM (season preview)
Probable starter: Sean Brady (4.40 ERA, 17:7 SO/BB, 30.2 IP)
High-A: Bradenton (34-25) vs Dunedin (36-23) 6:30 PM (season preview)
Probable starter: Max Kranick (4.61 ERA, 45:19 SO/BB, 54.2 IP)
Low-A: Greensboro (39-20) @ Lakewood (21-38) 5:35 PM DH (season preview)
Probable starter: Alex Manasa (3.34 ERA, 60:12 SO/BB, 64.2 IP) and Conner Loeprich (3.29 ERA, 28:7 SO/BB, 27.1 IP)
DSL: Pirates1 (3-2) vs Indians/Brewers 10:30 AM (season preview)
DSL: Pirates2 (4-1) vs Giants 10:30 AM (season preview)
From Indianapolis, Pablo Reyes hits his fourth home run of the season.
— Indianapolis Indians (@indyindians) June 5, 2019
That saying about it looking like a line drive in the boxscore doesn’t work if you have highlight proof…one of two doubles by Jason Martin on Wednesday
J-Mart with the cheat code double:
Left, left, right, left trigger, up, right bumper, down, up, down.
*ball disappears* pic.twitter.com/3lhfUywaF5
— Indianapolis Indians (@indyindians) June 6, 2019
6/5: Jesus Liranzo sent outright to Indianapolis. Trayvon Robinson placed on injured list.
6/4: Deon Stafford and Hunter Stratton suspended (league). Shea Murray assigned to Extended Spring Training. John Bormann and Luis Nova added to Bradenton roster.
6/3: Cody Bolton placed on injured list
6/2: Pirates release Randolph Gassaway
5/31: Pedro Vasquez and Alfredo Reyes assigned to Altoona. Adrian Valerio and Ryan Valdes assigned to Bradenton.
5/31: Jack Herman assigned to Greensboro. Brett Kinneman assigned to Extended Spring Training
5/31: Allen Montgomery added to Bradenton roster
5/30: Connor Kaiser activated from Greenboro injured list.
5/29: Joe Jacques promoted to Bradenton.
5/29: Jake Elmore sent outright to Indianapolis.
5/28: Mitch Keller optioned to Indianapolis.
5/28: Alfredo Reyes promoted to Indianapolis. Domingo Robles promoted to Altoona.
5/27: Pirates acquire Yefry Ramirez from Baltimore Orioles for cash or PTBNL.
5/27: Pirates recall Mitch Keller. Montana DuRapau optioned to Indianapolis.
5/27: Cam Vieaux promoted to Indianapolis. Steven Baron activated from injured list.
5/27: Ryan Valdes and Austin Coley promoted to Altoona.
5/27: Alex McRae added to 40-man roster and recalled. Doydas Neverauskas optioned to Indianapolis.
5/27: Pirates recall Richard Rodriguez to serve as 26th man for doubleheader.
THIS DATE IN PIRATES HISTORY
Three former Pittsburgh Pirates players born on this date, plus one very interesting day for transactions back in 1939. Starting with the players, we have 2009 pitcher Virgil Vasquez, catcher Roy Jarvis (1946-47) and shortstop Bones Ely, who played for the team from 1896 and 1901 and held the shortstop position for the first two seasons that Honus Wagner spent in a Pirates’ uniform. A few years back, we posted an article on Ely and his time with the Pirates. That can be found here.
On this date in 1939, the Pirates decided to release outfielder Heinie Manush and sign outfielder Chuck Klein, who was just released by the Phillies the day before. Manush wasn’t doing well in a pinch-hitting role, going 0-for-12 with a walk and an RBI. The release actually ended his big league career. Klein came in and did well for the Pirates, hitting .300 with 11 homers the rest of the way. By the end of next Spring Training however, he was released and re-signed with the Phillies. These two players were both elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Manush made it in 1964 and Klein 16 years later.
Here is the boxscore from the day Klein signed and Manush was released. The Pirates won 2-0 behind a complete game shutout from Bill Swift. Every player in the Pirates lineup that day had at least one hit, including two by Lloyd Waner. Klein scored the first run of the game, which ended up being the game-winner.