The first game against the Miami Marlins initially began how the previous series went. Neither team looking particularly strong on offense, with Zach Thompson stretching the Marlins scoreless streak to 37 innings.
After Jason Delay got the Pittsburgh Pirates on the board with his first career homerun, the Marlins offense finally broke through getting four runs in the fourth. With the Marlins adding another four runs throughout the game, the Pirates went down quietly 8-1 while only collecting two hits in the game.
The Pirates offense is likely to get worse before things get better. Bryan Reynolds is currently recovering from an oblique injury, and the Pirates just traded Daniel Vogelbach. There isn’t much more meat for the Pirates to trade aside from Jose Quintana, but one of the veteran bullpen arms or bats might appease a front office enough looking for a slight upgrade to their bench.
With the MLB Draft still being fresh, I thought an interesting topic would be a discussion surrounding Prep Prospects. Particularly one from the Marlins and one from the Pirates.
Medium athletic build, has some present strength room for more. Has outstanding defensive tools behind the plate, quick and explosive actions, big-time arm strength, 1.89 in game, 1.78 in drills with game actions, very quick in his transfers, excels in all areas defensively. 6.94 runner. Right handed hitter, big bat wrap to start his swing, gets the barrel into the zone well, has improved his bat speed over the past year, can create back spin and get the ball to carry. Defensive tools set him apart.
This is Henry Davis’ 2018 scouting report that I’ve mentioned in the comments before, as I found it ironic considering Davis’ profile prior to the Pirates selecting him 1st overall in 2021 MLB Draft.
Davis wasn’t drafted during 2018 MLB Draft. He was ranked the 231st high school prospect, and the 20th high school catching prospect on Perfect Game. He was considered a defense first catcher, with hopes the bat would show growth. He would then completely flip his profile while at Louisville, where now his bat is his carrying tool and scouts question whether he’ll stick behind the plate.
Left handed hitter, has a good shift in from an upright open stance, has quick hands and can turn on the inside pitch and drive it with authority, smooth athletic swing with extension, really projects well with the bat and performed very well in the games. Also pitched, two-way prospect. Compact arm action with a high 3/4’s arm slot, quick arm coming through. Fastball topped out at 88 mph with very good life, slider showed power and late biting action.
This is from a scouting report for Marlins SP, Max Meyer. He was a 5’11” and 165 lbs two-way player that topped out at 88 MPH. He was originally drafted in the 34th round by the Minnesota Twins in 2017, but elected to attend Minnesota University. He was ranked the 128th High School Pitching prospect, and not among the Top 500 overall. Just as an interesting note, also found that he played hockey for his local high school, Woodbury High. Leading his team in penalty minutes with 35 PIM in 25 games.
What do these two have in common? They were low ranked high school kids that went to college, and then built up their pedigree enough to become top first round picks. Just about everyone remembers how the Pirates drafted Trea Turner in the 20th round of the 2011 draft, but he proceeded to go to NC State for three years before being drafted by the San Diego Padres in the first round of the 2014 MLB Draft.
The question becomes, do you believe these three players become the Top 100 Prospects (or MLB contributors in Trea Turner’s case) if they sign — pretend Henry Davis was drafted in 2018 for a second — out of High School? Or do you think the college path was what unlocked their potential?
I know part of my reasoning for liking Prep picks in the draft is the allure that they could become a hidden gem. At the same time, maybe going pro so early affects the individual career and development of prep players. Maybe Henry Davis never breaks out of his original defensive first mold, and becomes another Carter Bins where he shows raw power every now and then, but never on a consistent basis. Maybe Max Meyer only becomes a finesse righty, instead of throwing mid-90’s and sometimes touching 100 with a devastating slider. Maybe the Twins would’ve developed Meyer as a hitter.
Would Michael Burrows have been a big bonus first rounder in 2021 had he attended University of Connecticut? What would we think of injury riddled pitchers like Cody Bolton, Travis MacGregor, or Braxton Ashcraft as opposed to Hunter Barco and vice versa?
Marlins @ Pirates
Time: 7:05 PM EST
Pirates Starter: Jose Quintana (2-5, 3.99)
Marlins Starter: Max Meyer (0-1, 8.44)
Quintana Notes: Jose Quintana had arguably his worst start last time out in Colorado. Giving up six runs in five innings, while only striking out three batters to two walks. If there was a time for Quintana to get back on track, this would probably be the start. The Miami Marlins got to Zach Thompson, but have otherwise had trouble scoring. With Daniel Vogelbach being shipped out just prior to game one against the Marlins, there’s a good chance this could be Quintana’s final start for the Pirates.
— Pittsburgh Pirates (@Pirates) July 23, 2022
— Fish on the Farm (@marlinsminors) July 23, 2022