Prospect Watch: Termarr Johnson Returns; Harrington and Ashcraft Look Strong

Four Friday night games, headlined by the return of Termarr Johnson. Thomas Harrington bounced back well from an awful start last week. Quinn Priester will be looking to do the same thing next week after his outing tonight. Sean Sullivan has been solid early, while Braxton Ashcraft still hasn’t allowed a run through three starts.


Prospect Watch: Solid Outings from Jared Jones and Bubba Chandler, Five RBIs from Jase Bowen


Pirates 2023 Minor League Previews: Indianapolis Indians


Final Score: Memphis 8, Indianapolis 4
Indianapolis Starter
: Quinn Priester (1-1, 6.08)
Pitching Line
: 1.2 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 3 SO
Box Score

Top Performers:

  • Nick Gonzales 1-for-4
  • Cal Mitchell 0-for-4
  • Malcom Nunez 0-for-4

Game Recap:

Quinn Priester made his fourth start of the season on Friday night. It did not go well. He lasted just 1.2 innings, giving up four runs on five hits, a walk and three strikeouts. He now has a 7.80 ERA in 15 innings. He threw 61 pitches in this outing, with 36 going for strikes.

Cam Alldred followed Priester and stranded an inherited runner to finish the second inning. He ended up going 2.1 innings, giving up three runs on four hits and three walks. Colin Selby tossed a scoreless fifth. Yerry De Los Santos came on in the sixth and had a busy two innings. He allowed four hits, walked two, gave up a run and struck out three batters. Eli Villalobos took the eighth and struck out the side on 15 pitches.

Indianapolis got a run in the first when Miguel Andujar singled home Nick Gonzales. Chavez Young hit a solo homer in the fifth, his first of the season. Ryan Vilade added a two-run homer in the sixth, his first of the season. Andujar had the only two-hit night, adding his first triple of the season. He was the only player from either team who didn’t strike out at least once.

Both Endy Rodriguez and Travis Swaggerty ended up on the injured list today.


Pirates 2023 Minor League Previews: Altoona Curve


Final Score: Altoona 8, Bowie 1
Altoona Starter
: Sean Sullivan (0-0, 0.00)
Pitching Line
: 4.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 SO
Box Score

Top Performers:

  • Henry Davis 0-for-3, BB, SB
  • Liover Peguero 2-for-3, BB, 3 Runs, 3 SB
  • Connor Scott 1-for-4, 3B, RBI
  • Lolo Sanchez 1-for-5

Game Recap:

Starter Sean Sullivan has thrown shutout ball in both of his starts this year. His first game lasted just 2.1 innings. He expanded to 4.1 innings this time, allowing two hits and two walks, while striking out three batters. He threw 41 of 67 pitches for strikes.

Cameron Junker followed with 1.2 scoreless. Oliver Garcia allowed a run in the seventh. Tahnaj Thomas recorded two outs in the eighth before the game went into a rain delay. Tyler Samaniego took over when they returned and finished off the win.

The Curve scored three first inning runs on a Domingo Leyba double and a Jacob Gonzalez single. Connor Scott tripled in a run in the third, then scored on a wild pitch. Gonzalez singled in a run on the eighth, which was followed by a Fabricio Macias sacrifice fly and an Andres Alvarez RBI double.

Liover Peguero had quite a day, with two singles, a walk, three runs and three stolen bases. Leyba had three hits and two runs. Henry Davis stole his fourth base.


Pirates 2023 Minor League Previews: Greensboro Grasshoppers


Final Score: Greensboro 2, Greenville 1
Greensboro Starter
: Braxton Ashcraft (NR)
Pitching Line
: 4 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 SO
Box Score

Top Performers:

  • Jase Bowen 0-for-4
  • Sammy Siani 0-for-2, BB
  • Hudson Head 0-for-2, BB
  • Maikol Escotto 0-for-3

Game Recap:

Braxton Ashcraft was activated off of the Injured List and joined Greensboro, after making two dominating rehab starts for Bradenton. He looked just as strong in this game, allowing two hits over four shutout innings, with no walks and six strikeouts. He’s gone 10.1 innings this year, with no runs and 17 strikeouts. He threw 49 pitches in this game, with 38 going for strikes.

Jack Carey followed with a scoreless fifth. Michell Miliano had a very busy scoreless 2.2 innings, finishing with two hits, three walks and five strikeouts. Cy Nielson allowed an unearned run in the ninth for the save. 

Greensboro had just two hits in the game, a double by Jackson Glenn and a triple by Luke Brown. Glenn drove in both runs, with one coming on a ground out and the other on his double. The two teams powered the stadium lights with the wind produced from a total of 28 strikeouts.


Pirates 2023 Minor League Previews: Bradenton Marauders


Final Score: Bradenton 10, Daytona 0
Bradenton Starter
: Thomas Harrington (1-0, 7.04)
Pitching Line
: 5 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 SO
Box Score

Top Performers:

  • Jesus Castillo 0-for-6
  • Enmanuel Terrero 4-for-5, 2B, RBI
  • Shalin Polanco 1-for-4, HBP
  • Termarr Johnson 1-for-2, 2 RBI, BB
  • Jauri Custodio 1-for-2
  • Javier Rivas 2-for-4, 2 RBI

Game Recap:

Thomas Harrington made his third start of the season, which was much like his first start. He threw shutout ball over five innings, with four hits, one walk and four strikeouts. He tossed 45 of his 65 pitches for strikes. He threw shutout ball in his pro debut, then got roughed up in his second start, leaving him with a 4.26 ERA through three games.

Julian Bosnic and Mike Walsh each tossed two shutout frames.

Bradenton singled Daytona to death in this game. The Marauders had 15 hits, which consisted of 13 singles and two doubles. Enmanuel Terrero continued to be the hottest hitter on the planet, collecting four hits, including his second double. He has a .386 batting average through 13 games.

The big story here was the return of Termarr Johnson. He batted three times as the DH in this game, which is basically a rehab game for him, even though the plan (for now) is to keep him at Bradenton. He singled in two runs and drew a walk.

Tres Gonzalez reached base in all five trips to the plate. He had three singles and two walks. Alexander Mojica had three hits and three RBIs, as well as a walk. Javier Rivas had two hits and drove in two runs. Shalin Polanco had a single, HBP and two runs.

It wasn’t all sunshine and roses for Bradenton. Jesus Castillo went 0-for-6 in the lead-off spot.

John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.

When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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I know folks said “Wait until the end of April”, but Nicky the K has now stuck out in 34% of his PAs. Should we trade him while he still has some value? DOES he have value?

Of course, there’s ‘my man’ Gorski who has k’d in FORTY percent of his plate appearances. Like Nicky G he has a solid OPS, tho. But, I guess NMR was right about him. 🙁 🙁


Jack Suwinski has outrageous K rates and still has found (at least temporary) ML success. Gonzales and Gorski are scaring me with their K tendencies, but the game has also shifted substantially towards more strikeouts in the last 2-3 years where everyone is striking out more. If the contact they make is rare but consistently loud, that may be workable in today/tomorrows game


Jack Suwinski has the exact same k rate as noted contact specialist Ji hwan Bae.


They banned infield shifts, but perhaps they need to put 3 outfielders in RF against him.🤣🤣🤣


I think they need to target Seattle for a trade. They’re not getting any production from second base and have a comp pick plus the bonus pick for J-Rod. (29 & 30)? The pick plus maybe a lottery ticket might make sense.


The odds of those two picks become starting MLB players is less than 15%. And that includes the likes of Kevin Newman, et al.


Not sure how that’s relevant honestly. Is it more likely than 15% that Nick Gonzalez is going to become a starting player for us? Not with this depth chart….


True. At this point 15% is probably a better percentage than Nicky the K becoming a starting MLB player. 😎😎😎


Can anyone summarize what is going wrong for Priester? Also any velo readings on Aschcraft or Harrington? Thank you!


James is the man.

At least last night it looks like Priester didn’t have his breaking balls. Threw mostly fastballs and neither of his breakers landed in the zone more than 17%.

If he can’t lean on the breaking balls it seems like he’s gonna get lit up.


Thank you for pulling these minor league games, I havent figure out how to do that!

Ashcraft in the 97’s! 👀🔥🔥🔥
Harrington 95 sinker 💪
Priester 4 seam *topping out* at 93 but sitting 90-92 😬


By all accounts he’s quite hittable. Several outlets mention his fastball shape as being poor, even with good velocity.


I wonder if he is injured and is our next SP to go under the knife?

Scam likely

This miliano guy if he can get the walks under control he might need to be fast tracked. Has great stuff when he is throwing strikes.


You can say that about most young hurlers with great stuff who can’t find the strike zone?

Wilbur Miller

Compared to previous years, Miliano has turned into Greg Maddux. IF he continues that improvement, maybe . . . .


Good point. 😁

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