P2Daily: Mike Burrows Getting Comfortable at the Triple-A Level

It’s been a crazy ride for Mike Burrows through the minor league system. He’s emerged as one of the better pitching prospects, not only in the system, but in baseball, being recently added to Baseball America’s Top 100 prospect list.

Part of the impressive part with his rise is how quickly he has moved on from each level. This season he has easily rolled past his previous career high innings pitched mark, after throwing just 52 frames in Double-A continued a theme of graduating quickly from a level.

Those 52 innings with Altoona to begin the year is not only the most he’s pitched in a season, but also the most he’s thrown at a single level.

He threw 49 innings at High-A Greensboro in 2021, and 43 2/3 at short season West Virginia back in 2019.

To be honest, it started to look like the rapid climb was starting to catch up with him after joining Indianapolis, not exactly looking like his previous dominant form from the last year and a half. He didn’t get off to the worst start with Indy (nine hits and three earned runs in his first two outings in a combined 7 1/3 innings), but then struggled in next few times on the mound.

Burrows came out the bullpen and struck out four across two innings heading into the All-Star break. He made his appearance in the MLB Futures Game, and after struggling his first start back, he has started to settle in his last two starts.

Pitching on Friday, Burrows pitched five shutout innings, walking one and striking out six, the second straight start he’s had with that amount of punch outs.

There’s been a lot of focus on the system this season, and the lack of progress it has made in the eyes of some. Players that people were hoping would take a step forward didn’t, and you can even argue them taking a step back as well.

But Burrows, as well as Endy Rodriguez, have really continued their development and have become two of the best prospects in the system. There were questions on whether Burrows could stay in the rotation, but has really taken a big step forward with his changeup, furthering his cause to be a starter.

If history continues to repeat itself, within the next couple of outings Burrows will reach that 40-50 innings mark at the Triple-A level, and while there won’t be too big a rush to make the next jump to the majors, things are certainly starting to align in his favor that he could still make his Major League debut this season.

Other Notes

— It was a very impressive rebound start for Aaron Shortridge, who looked like he was going to get run off after just an inning. The 25-year-old allowed four runs in the first inning, but then threw five shutout frames afterwards. It was the first time he completed six full innings since 2019.

Over a four inning span, Shortridge faced only one over the minimum, sprinkling in a pair of double plays to erase early base runners. Each hit he allowed after the first were singles.

— Bradenton stole seven bases in their loss against Tampa on Friday night. Two of those were by Jack Brannigan, who now has five with the Marauders already, even stealing home in the third inning. Not exactly the guy you think about when you talking about stealing, but it shows just how aggressive the team is on the bases.

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Good stuff as always, AM. Hoping Burrows can slot in as a #4 SP. Most evaluators seem to put him in that slot.

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