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Thursday, December 8, 2022

P2Daily: How The Pirates Minor League Teams Performed Relative To Their League

Numbers don’t always paint the full picture, especially without some sort of context. A prospect may have a really high average, but you can always ask what level they are at and how old they are. That adds more to painting the picture. How they are performing compared to the rest of their league also adds clarity.

Maybe they just have a .705 OPS but the league is extremely pitcher friendly, and that number is still batting above average compared to the other hitters.

I decided to take each team and compared their overall OPS and ERA to their league and who were some of the players who performed above average.

Indianapolis Indians

Team OPS – .752 – 10th of 20 teams – League Average .750

Team ERA – 4.59 – 10th – League Average 4.64

Indianapolis finished with a 71-74 record, so the fact that they finished right in the middle of the pack in both OPS and ERA really isn’t all that surprising. They finished right above average in both categories, having a total of 12 players finishing higher than the league’s mark in their respective stat.

Baseball-Reference (where the data was taken) has a little more of a relaxed requirements for qualifying, helping add a few lines to the list. Cam Vieaux (3.06) and Cody Bolton (3.09) led the way on the pitching side of things, with Osvaldo Bido finishing just better than league average while striking out 122 batters in 111 1/3 innings.

The Indians had seven hitters finished above league average in OPS with Cal Mitchell (.937) and Bligh Madris (.848) leading the way. Only Jared Oliva finished the season with the team and recorded a higher than .750 OPS.

Altoona Curve

Team OPS – .744 – 4th of 12 teams – League Average .728

Team ERA – 3.99 – 4th – League Average 4.37

Altoona entered the season with one of the deepest teams prospect wise maybe in all of baseball, and their fourth place finish in both OPS and ERA played to that. Blake Sabol (.833) and Aaron Shackelford (.813) led the way for the Curve hitters and was among five players to post an above average OPS (Nick Gonzales, Jared Triolo and Andres Alvarez).

Even missing the first part of the season, Quinn Priester pitched effectively enough to still log 75 1/3 innings with Altoona before moving up to Triple-A. He led the team in ERA while with Altoona, posting a 2.87 mark. JC Flowers and Mike Burrows both finished with a sub-3.00 ERA and in total eight Curve pitchers finished with an above average mark compared to the Eastern League.

Greensboro Grasshoppers

Team OPS – .737 – 6th of 12 teams – League Average .724

Team ERA – 5.36 – 10th – League Average 4.48

The Grasshoppers play in one of the most hitter friendly ballparks in the minors, so it shouldn’t be too much a surprise they finished above average in OPS. It also really shouldn’t be a shocker they finished below league average in ERA having to pitch in the ballpark half the time.

Cam Junker (3.64), Nick Garcia (3.66), and Justin Meis (4.44) were the only three pitchers to finish better than career average. Junker finished with a team high 12 saves on the season and Garcia logged 113 innings across 25 appearances, striking out 109. Meis got off to a rough start in Greensboro but really found a groove down the stretch.

On the hitting side of things, Endy Rodriguez led the team in OPS, posting a .936 mark. Francisco Acuna (before he was suspended) and Dariel Lopez rounded up the trio to finish with at least an .800 OPS. Overall six players finished above league average, with Abrahan Gutierrez, Jacob Gonzalez and Hudson Head picking up the rear.

Bradenton Marauders

Team OPS – .697 – 3rd of 10 teams – League Average .687

Team ERA – 4.04 – 7th – League Average 3.92

This is maybe the best example of a number not always telling the whole story. Usually at first glance a team OPS of .697 isn’t the most impressive, but Bradenton finished third in the Florida State League and was 10 points above average.

Jase Bowen, Tsung-Che Cheng, Rodolfo Nolasco, and Wyatt Hendrie all finished with an OPS of over .700 on the season.

On the pitching side of things, they finished with a below league average mark when it comes to ERA but did have four players stay above. Anthony Solometo was fantastic in his debut year, and led the team with a 2.64 ERA. Joelvis Del Rosario finished with a 3.68 mark over 93 innings and Johan Montero and Wilkin Ramos also finished above league average in ERA.

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Anthony began writing over 10 years ago, starting a personal blog to cover the 2011 MLB draft, where the Pirates selected first overall. After bouncing around many websites covering hockey, he refocused his attention to baseball, his first love when it comes to sports. He eventually found himself here at Pirates Prospects in late 2021, where he covers the team’s four full season minor league affiliates.

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Todd

9 players to protect: 3 from 60; 6 from Rule 5. DFA: 3 catchers, 5 pitchers, Newman, Collins. That leaves one to pick in the Rule 5 draft

Scrappy2499

I don’t think you will see them DFA Newman. He plays good defense in the infield and just when you think he can’t hit he starts putting the ball in play and getting on base finishing up the season as one of their better hitters. If they can trade him then I could maybe see that happening but no chance they DFA him.

bscat

I think I’d like Newman (righty platoon guy) better than a rule 5 pick.

b mcferren

will Bellinger be the guy we start at first on opening day?

SufferinBuccotash

I’m going to put my vote in for…..no…

Wilbur Miller

Well, BA has posted MiL park factors. They include HR, runs and BABIP.

Indy
HR – 83
R – 88
BABIP – 101

Altoona
HR – 95
R – 109
BABIP – 102

GBO
HR – 156
R – 121
BABIP – 95

BRD
HR – 128
R – 98
BABIP – 93

Wilbur Miller

Nick G on the BA Hot List this week.

I have a feeling he’s going to have us all tearing our hair out eventually. For a while, he’ll rake and rake and rake, then the Ks come back. Maybe just staying healthy for a year will make a difference.

Last edited 1 month ago by Wilbur Miller
SBRO

Adjusting for the home park, you start to see a more nuanced picture. Gutierrez, Gonzalez, Endy, Gorski and Acuña all hit well on the road, but Lopez (.692) and Head (.690) were below average.

You have to hope that Head is just next year’s Gorski, because in 2 years in the system he hasn’t shown enough ability to put the ball in play to allow his other skills to manifest.

Wilbur Miller

The GBO park is hard to figure. It inflates HRs, we know that. But it’s more extreme with somebody like Dariel Lopez, whose power is to right center, because the park has no power alleys. Other guys hit better on the road. It deflates BABIP, which could have a lot of causes, including hitters and pitchers altering their approaches. The pitchers are all over the lot, too. (There’s a GBO recap coming up soon and I went into this quite a bit, player by player.) You probably need to combine H/R splits with Statcast data, which of course we don’t have, to start building up a profile of the place.

roberto

Scouting minor league stats is a tough ask. The real question is about how this plays against MLB players. That can be hard to discern, especially if the player is tasked with “take strike one” or “throw 30% changeups.”

mpg43952

Let’s hope we see Bolton in the big league bullpen next year!

b mcferren

nontender Underwood and add Bolton to the 40 man

The Gunner

I’m pretty sure Underwood’s 2 year tryout will soon be coming to an end.

JimEastTennessee

agreed. 35-45 pitch count, middle relief to start

JimEastTennessee

Don’t get us started on bullpen mismanagement, or the next thing we know it will be March 2023…

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