Pirates Prospects Daily: Injuries Are Impacting the Indianapolis Rotation

Injuries have hit the Pittsburgh Pirates, as an organization, pretty hard as of late. There’s been plenty of injury updates over the last week or so, a lot of them unfortunate, such as JT Brubaker having Tommy John surgery

The Indianapolis Indians were struck particularly hard, especially when it comes to the rotation. Not only were they going to be without two of their starters for some time, the two were scheduled to pitch on consecutive days.

Caleb Smith was placed on the Injured List this week, and Thursday would have been his scheduled day in the rotation. Instead, they went with Cam Alldred and he came up big on short notice, allowing two runs on three hits over four innings, while striking out six batters.

This is nothing new for Alldred, as he was very comfortable in a multi-inning role for Indianapolis last year. Of his 42 appearances last year in Triple-A, he threw two or more inning in 18 of them.

Now attention will turn to tomorrow, where it would have been Mike Burrows‘ turn in the rotation. Burrows is looking for a second opinion currently on a sprained UCL, but Ben Cherington said he ‘is gonna be out for a while’.

Carmen Mlodzinski (who pitched on Thursday) and Cody Bolton are two pitchers who made the shift to the bullpen this year, but have starting experience, so the Pirates could look their way to eat some of the innings they’ve lost with Burrows and Smith out.

— There were a lot of interesting names on the Bradenton roster to start the year, among them Thomas Harrington, Javier Rivas, and Shalin Polanco. Digging a little deeper, Jesus Castillo looks like another name to monitor closely.

The 19-year-old infielder has shown a great approach at the plate, walking eight times and collecting seven hits in just six games this season. He’s never hit for much power, and all of his hits have been singles so far this year, but he is does have a frame that he could grow into some more (MiLB.com has him listed as 5’10”).

— More on the injury front, Jack Carey, Liover Peguero, and Travis Swaggerty were three more names that left the game early. 

Peguero left after committing an error in the bottom of the 10th inning. Carey faced two batters before leaving the Greensboro game as well.

It’s certainly been a rough season when it comes to injuries, and it’s only a couple weeks into the season.

Daily Video Rundown

Mason Martin stays hot, driving in a pair of runs with this single in the third inning of the Altoona game.

Endy Rodriguez guns down a runner trying to steal third base in the eight inning of an one run game.

The Pirates really needed someone to step up with Oneil Cruz out, and so far Ji-Hwan Bae is doing it with the glove and the bat.


By Tim Williams

Pirates Recap: Vince Velasquez Leads Shutout Over Cardinals

Prospect Watch: Another Rough Day for the Starters

**Ethan Hullihen looks at what it would take for each player to gain an extra year of service time in 2023.

**I’ve got a column on Ji-Hwan Bae’s defense on Friday morning.

**Minor Moves: Shalin Polanco Joins Bradenton

**From yesterday: Mason Martin Showing a Better Approach


I picked up a Sam Cooke album last weekend. Today, I’m going with a Sam Cooke cover by T-Pain. He made auto-tune popular, but T-Pain’s natural voice is phenomenal.

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.

Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.

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These injuries can be seen as opportunities for others to step up and establish themselves.


Another benchmark for Reynolds?


Webb had three years of control left (including this year, same as Reynolds) and the deal buys out two years for free agency for a total of $90MM. Would you rather have Webb or Reynolds? Webb was better last year, Reynolds the year before, and over the past two season their WAR values are comparable (8.3 for Webb vs. 9.0 for Reynolds).


Im more wondering if this shows us how reasonable it would be to extend keller if he keeps having success since it would have to be quite a bit less than webb


Seems pretty obvious that if Bryan Reynolds would be willing to accept a 1-2 yr extension the deal would’ve already been done.


“… T-Pain’s natural voice is phenomenal.”

Yeah, but Sam Cooke’s was the voice of an angel.


Bae seems to be able to play the outfield, shortstop and second base better than the players who man those positions. Perhaps you can change the highlights to the Bae plays.


Not related to anything here, but where’s Rodolfo Nolasco? Looks like he’s assigned to the FCL team. Is that due to injury or his swing and miss issues? If the latter, that’s a big wake up call.


He started the season on the Bradenton 7 Day IL along with Polanco, Terrmer and Peralta. I’m not sure what Nolasco’s injury is.

b mcferren

I also liked hearing that Flowers may be stretching out


As another commentator suggested, we might not have the luxury of Bolton and the Mlod-father as relief arms anymore

Wilbur Miller

Indy also lost Wei-Chieh Huang, a MiL R5 pick who has some ML experience. He probably would have been rotation depth, but he’s out for the year.


Hey is Chris Archer still available? No, I’m not ducking!


And I like Baez, but just noting the irony.


Weird thing to hope for but I hope Swaggerty’s not “injured” but is just feeling sick.
I could be wrong but I felt the last couple of years majority stayed incredibly healthy. This year it feels a lot less healthy. 🙁

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