Pirates Prospects Daily: Jack Brannigan Continues Hot Streak With Another Home Run

Over the course of the entire baseball season, every player will go through a series of ups and downs. The hope is that they will drag out the good, and limit the bad, and by it is all said and done, you have yourself a successful season.

Maybe no one is running a hotter bat right now than Bradenton Marauders’ infielder Jack Brannigan.

Drafted out of Notre Dame, Brannigan made a splash immediately when he was announced as a two-way player when the Pirates selected him. Scouts liked his potential on the mound, and it seemed at least at first the goal was to get him some work in as a pitcher at some point.

With his recent performance in the batters’ box, there might be enough intrigue with his overall skillset to scrap the two-way plans, at least for now.

Brannigan flashed his incredibly underrated speed to close out the month of May, stealing a base in five consecutive games, and his latest on Friday pushed him to double digits on the season.

In June, he’s flashed some of his raw power, hitting home runs in four of his last five games (five overall), and has a slash of .385/.500/1.038 this month.

One knock on Brannigan going through the draft process was his hit tool, with Baseball America giving it a ’30’ rating, and Fangraphs a ’30/40′ future value.

He’s walking a tight rope with the strikeouts, hanging out just under the 30% mark, which isn’t ideal for a college hitter playing in Single-A, but he’s still shown some flashes.

His latest home run from Friday night was particularly encouraging to see, waiting on a breaking ball away and driving it to right-center, over the fence for a go-ahead three-run shot.

An early season injury slowed down his progress, but it looks like he starting to catch up to everyone else, and then some.

Even if he never steps on the mound, Brannigan has plenty of tools to keep things interesting, as Baseball America also mentioned he had the defense to challenge for a Gold Glove at some point.

He’s flashed the arm that allows him to reach the upper-90s with his fastball, it’s just about working on the hit tool and when he does cool off this hot streak, limiting the valley that’ll come with it.

Prospect Notes

— Went back and watch the Thomas Harrington start from Thursday night, and it felt like it was a completely different pitcher on the mound.

Watching him in Bradenton he seemed more a finesse/pitch to contact type of pitcher, but Thursday night he was blowing elevated fastballs past hitters, mixing in the slider and changeup throughout.

There’s a very fun group of pitchers in the lower levels, to the point you could probably talk about someone different throughout the week and not really repeat.

— He hasn’t pitched much since the Pirates signed him, so it shouldn’t be too much a surprise that Friday was Brandan Bidois’ first professional win of his career.

With Bradenton he’s averaging mid 90s with his fastball, and his curveball is averaging over 3,000 rpms on it’s spin rate, which would be among the best in the majors right now.

Daily Video Rundown

Tsung-Che Cheng picks up his eighth home run of the season for the Grasshoppers, this one a two-run shot in the first inning.

Nick Gonzales with a home run to start off the home half of the first inning for Indianapolis.

Matt Gorski goes the other way for his eighth home run of the season.


By Tim Williams 

Looking for the nightly Prospect Watch, Pirates Recap, and game discussion? Check out Pirates Prospects Live.

**P2Live: Pirates Crush the Mets, Power on Display in Farm System

Down in Single-A, the Pirates are seeing great results from pitcher Ryan Harbin, as Anthony Murphy details. 

**Ryan Harbin: Sinker/Slider Mix Dominating Single-A Hitters

The Pirates have lost Vince Velasquez for the year, making this the second starter they’ve lost from their expected Opening Day rotation. 

**Pirates Notebook: Vince Velasquez is Done for the Season; Pirates DFA Chase De Jong

The Pirates have the first pick in the draft in less than a month, and MLB Pipeline has the latest mock draft. 

**New Mock Draft from MLB Pipeline

Missed yesterday? Anthony looked at the development from Jared Jones this year in Altoona. 

**Jared Jones Continues Incredible Development With Altoona


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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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Crews Countdown

Wilbur Miller

The FCL Bucs’ bench has like a drumline going.


Love the young kids having some fun!

Wilbur Miller

FCL games are great.


Hayes already has tied last year for the most barrels hes had in a season. Continues to trail is expected stats by a bit!


The hit he had last night on an 0-2 count where Megill threw him an off speed pitch barely off the ground that Hayes lined over the SS for two RBI’s was the most impressive display of hitting I can remember seeing from him.

Let’s enjoy this ride while it lasts.


At the time I read that, I said ‘yeah right, that ain’t gonna help’.

I like being wrong at times.😂😂😂


I wish I knew what being wrong feels like….


It’s been a while since I heard the Grasshoppers’ announcer’s homerun call, day is already better.

Wilbur Miller

Watching Shim now. Fanned the side in the first. Don’t know the velo but . . . damn.


Is the stuff he’s slinging as good as the state line so far. 5k’s in 2 innings.

Wilbur Miller


Wilbur Miller

Slider looks good, too.
Hard to make judgments though. These guys are totally overwhelmed by the FB. But his command looks much better than I expected. This is not a raw guy.
Three IP now. 7 Ks, one liner on which Bishop made a great diving catch, and one dribbler to 1B.


Thanks, do you think he might be ready for A ball?

Wilbur Miller

I don’t think he’ll be here long.


Great to hear, thanks again


Che Cheng! The man stays hot!!

2B Tsung-Che Cheng

Game stats: 3 for 4, one home run, two RBIs, two runs, one walk
Season stats: .306/.415/.584, 10 doubles, seven triples, eight home runs, 27 RBIs, 13 steals, 47 games

Last edited 3 months ago by leefieux

His counting stats are undeniably great. I’m wondering how much of it is ballpark related. Guess we’ll find out when he is promoted to Altoona.

Tim Williams

I don’t think it is related to the park. He’s been hitting everywhere. One of the best pure hitters in the system. I don’t think he will be challenged until Triple-A.

Last edited 3 months ago by Tim Williams

No different than the issue for Endy, Gonzales, and others

Endy’s 2022 season pushed him into the top 30 of all MILB (fueled by G’boro)

Cheng might not be considered top 30 among the Pirates for whatever reasons

And it’s not tool related b/c those are just fine


I hope he gets to Altoona soon.




Wow, Branningan is a super talented prospect. I know, college hitter in A-ball. But he looks like a great draft pick – I’d risk a pick on a guy like that all day. He can hit for power, steal bases, be a defensive stud at 3B? I’d say, give that kid a long run in the field and let him pitch a few innings out of the bullpen. If the “hit tool” never shows up and the strikeouts take over then put him back on the mound. Does hitting the ball over the fence count for any “hit tool” points?

Last edited 3 months ago by clemo83
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