The best way to keep the opposing offense off the board is to keep them from putting the ball into play. Once it is, there are so many factors outside of the pitcher’s control, it feels like more can go wrong than right.
Of all pitchers with at least 40 innings pitched last year in the Pirates system, only four had a swinging strike rate of at least 13%, and a ground ball rate over 50% — Anthony Solometo, Quinn Priester, Ricky DeVito, Noe Toribio.
After a rough start in Triple-A Indianapolis, he was sent back to Altoona, where he saw the strike outs started to come back.
Now pitching out of the bullpen again for Altoona, not only does Toribio have a swinging strike rate of over 16%, but has struck out over 40% of the batters he’s faced.
He picked up his first win of the season on Wednesday, pitching two innings while striking out four batters.
Toribio is still just 23-years-old, which is still a year younger than the average pitcher in the Eastern League.
He may be buried a little deep on the organizational depth chart, but if he continues to build off of last year, Toribio not only could be an option to move up to Indianapolis, but as a deeper sleeper bullpen option later in the season.
I dropped some mini wisdom on Twitter last night, saying that ‘it’s not the spectacular plays you make, it’s the routine ones you don’t’, which pretty much sums up the Pirates right now.
I don’t think a three game losing streak over the course of 162 games really means it’s time to hit the panic button — even if they’ve lost in the fashion they have.
It’s a long season, and a lot of things are going to happen, good and bad. The teams that stay in contention for the entire season are the ones who limit the bad.
What’s the best way to limit the bad? Control the controllable. Make the easy play over and over again.
We saw it with Ji-Hwan Bae, he saved a run with a fantastic diving stop, only give it right back up on the easier of the two plays.
We will see what this Pirates team is made of in how they respond to this, and each of the struggles that comes across the way.
— I’m not one get worked up over a small sample size, but it has been a really rough start to the season for Termarr Johnson. He has over a 50% strikeout rate, while also committing four errors.
It’s only been seven games for Johnson, and he’s coming off an injury. Nothing to see here, yet.
Daily Video Rundown
Early and often.
Josh Palacios simply cannot be stopped. 😤 pic.twitter.com/SpwtD15b1j
— Indianapolis Indians (@indyindians) May 3, 2023
There may not be a hotter player in the system right now than Josh Palacios, which all started when he got called up to Indianapolis.
Liover Peguero with his first home run of the season, giving Altoona the lead again #LetsGoBucs pic.twitter.com/jc5gVPSyV5
— Anthony Murphy (@__Murphy88) May 4, 2023
Liover Peguero picks up his first home run on the season Wednesday night, temporarily giving Altoona the lead.
Matt Gorski with a two run home run for Altoona, giving them a 3-0 lead in the first inning #LetsGoBucs pic.twitter.com/jxXSY7FVA6
— Anthony Murphy (@__Murphy88) May 3, 2023
Another home run hit on Wednesday, Matt Gorski hit a two-run shot in the first inning, giving them a 3-0 lead right out the gate.
PIRATES PROSPECTS DAILY
By Tim Williams
The Pirates have their first three game losing streak of the year. In my latest column, I wrote about how this is when they need that veteran presence.
Williams: This is When the Pirates Need That Veteran Presence
Pirates Recap: Pirates Are Reminded There’s No Room For Mistakes Against the Best Team in Baseball
Prospect Watch: Altoona Wins Behind Homers from Liover Peguero and Matt Gorski
**Owen Kellington Might Have One Of The Best Pitches In The System
**Pitching Led the Pirates System in the First Month of the 2023 Season
SONG OF THE DAY
Has that been Gorski’s two-strike swing all season or has he massively toned down the effort in his swing recently?
So the pirates in the last few drafts took one of the best hitters available and how has that been working out? Swaggerty, Gonzales, Davis, Johnson. Swag can not stay on the field, gonzo is a K king, Davis is now showing he can hit and be a possible force in the pirate lineup and Johnson lets just say its a small sample size but those errors are alarming.
This seems like a good time as any to remind everyone that this outfit proclaimed that Noe Toribio would be the next Pirates pitcher to throw a no-hitter, if for nothing else than our own journalistic amusement. See the last line here: https://pirates.pittsburghbaseball.com/2021/07/11/the-next-pirate-to-throw-a-no-hitter-will-be/
Deeper sleeper…may I present to you, Noe “Rip Van Winkle” Toribio.
“We saw it with Ji-Hwan Bae, he saved a run with a fantastic diving stop, only give it right back up on the easier of the two plays.” You hit the nail on the head. Both Castro and Bae made dumb, simple mistakes last night. You can’t really blame either, since Castro was thrust into the SS role because of the Cruz injury and this is Bae’s first time playing in the majors. They just need time and seasoning.
We continue relearning the conventional wisdom of why there is absolutely nothing to be gained from pushing kids aggressively into the show.
Termarr Johnson is the worst “best pure hitter in the draft” I’ve ever seen.
Guys that can hit just come out and hit at low A.
Toribio has enough swing and miss stuff to eventually help the Pirates in the BP. Yes, he hit the wall at AAA in 2022, but here’s the facts. Last year he had thrown 39 innings into July at AA before being promoted to AAA. At the time of his promotion his ERA at AA was 1.85. He was decent in his first month/14 innings at AAA, but by then he had already thrown 53 innings.
Obviously the coaches at AAA did not think that might be pushing it for a young RP, so they used him another 30 innings over the last 2 months of the season where his ERA was 9.00 in August and 8.36 in Sep. Finished 2022 with 83 IP. He kept taking the ball, because that’s his job, but that type of usage borders on abuse.
Only four pitchers at AAA and AA threw more than 83 innings in 2022, and they were all SP’s who started at least 20 games.