Pittsburgh Pirates 2010 Minor League Review
Overall farm ranking via Baseball America (2010)
2010 (16) | 2009 (18) | 2008 (26) | 2007 (19) | 2006 (19) | 2005 (18) | 2004 (11)
Record of Major and Minor League Team(s)
MLB: [57 – 105] NL Central
AAA: [71 – 72] International League – Indianapolis
AA: [82 – 60] Eastern League – Altoona
A+: [76 – 62] Carolina League – Bradenton
A: [65 – 74] South Atlantic – West Virginia
A(ss): [33 – 42] New York Pennsylvania League – State College
R: [29 – 30] Gulf League
The Run Down
After another “they are who we thought they are,” (thank you Denny Green) type of season for the Pirates, 2011 does pose a few bright spots. The 2010 season saw several prospects graduate with varying success, most notably, Pedro Alvarez, Jose Tabata and Neil Walker. You could call it the year of the [rookie] hitter in Pittsburgh. The 2011 season should bring along the year of the pitcher. With Jeff Locke and Rudy Owens being the main rookies to keep an eye on, along with the infamous Daniel Moskos as a reliever. Don’t fret, Tony Sanchez wasn’t forgotten, just not 2011 fantasy season ready. Oh, and you can catch a Manny Machado MLB scouting Report here – he won’t be ready for a couple years. This young squad has the ability to have more than Andrew McCutchen shine in 2011. Pitching will still be the struggle even with Owens and Locke, but the hitters – that graduate in 2010 – have the best upside for the 2011 season.
#1 (3B) Pedro Alvarez; #2 (RF) Jose Tabata; #4 (RHP) Brad Lincoln; #21 (RHP) Dan McCutchen; #26 (2B) Neil Walker;
Arizona Fall League Players Scottsdale Scorpions
Pitchers – (LHP) Justin Wilson
Hitters – #3 (C) Tony Sanchez; #29 (2B) Josh Harrison; #22 (SS/OF) Jordy Mercer; #7 (LF – LAD) Andrew Lambo
Players of Interest
#5 Chase d’Arnaud | 2B/SS | D.o.B: 1-21-87 | Stats (AA): .247/.331/.377 | 530 AB | 48 XBH | 6 Hr | .130 ISO | 33/7 SB/CS | 102:56 K:BB | .293 BABIP
The older brother of Travis d’Arnaud, Chase plays a sound defensive game, usually playing more shortstop than second base; at shortstop he has solid range and strong arm. Scouts differ on his final position stating his range may be too limited for shortstop at the major leagues. With below average power and scouts stating that his strength is his on-base skills, d’Arnaud may be nothing more than a middle infield flier, or, deep breathe, a utility player.
Alex Presley | OF | D.o.B: 7-25-85 | Stats (AA/AAA): .320/373/.494 | 518 AB | 53 XBH | 12 Hr | .174 ISO | 13/8 SB/CS | 75:41 K:BB | .385 BABIP (AA); .330 BABIP (AAA)
I don’t have much information on Presley beyond the numbers. He did have 25 insignificant major league plate appearances in September. With a loaded outfield, Presley is poor man’s Denard Span at best. Most of his stats are inflated with high BABIP, so don’t expect much from him if given a call up due to injuries.
Matt Hague | 1B | D.o.B: 8-20-85 | Stats (AA): .295/.375/.442 | 509 AB | 45 XBH | 15 Hr | .147 ISO | 3/6 SB/CS | 62:61 K:BB | .310 BABIP
Just like Presley, I only have the numbers to work with. Hague appears to have good plate-discipline combined with boring power at first base. Not overly lucky (.310 BABIP), nor exciting, Hague reminds me of James Loney, expect I don’t know if he plays good defense. With Lyle Overbay and Steve Pearce/Garrett Jones, I don’t see Hague getting much time in the majors until September.
#9 Rudy Owens | LHP | D.o.B: 12-18-87 | Stats (AA): 7.9 K/9 | 1.4 BB/9 | 150 IP | 2.46 ERA | 2.95 FIP | .98 WHIP | .7 Hr/9 | 7.4 H/9 | .280 BABIP
This is who I am extremely excited about. No, he may not pitch until the mid-summer, but he could be this year’s Travis Wood. Throwing a 88 to 90 MPH fastball, a changeup – his best pitch – and a “slurvy curveball” doesn’t speak of a dominating pitcher. Baseball America calls him the, “classic crafty lefthander.” I call him a midseason sleeper barring injury.
#13 Jeff Locke | LHP | D.o.B: 11-20-87 | Stats (A+/AA): 8.7 K/9 | 1.6 BB/9 | 144 IP | 3.56 ERA | 3.37 FIP (A+); 2.95 FIP (AA) | 1.15 WHIP | .7 Hr/9 | 8.7 H/9 | .372 BABIP (A+); .280 BABIP (AA)
Received in the Nate McLouth trade in 2009, Locke might be the best piece in return. Baseball America calls him a “hard-throwing lefty.” Locke throws a 91 to 94 MPH fastball with “heavy sink,” a “decent” curveball, and an improving changeup. Statistically, Locke’s seasons were identical at High-A and Double-A with 8.7 K/9 at each level, with similar control (1.5 BB/9 at A+; 1.9 BB/9 at AA); innings were split as follows: 86 1/3 IP at High-A and 57 2/3 IP at Double-A. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him start a major league game in 2011 during the late summer (i.e. August).
#30 Dan Moskos | LHP | D.o.B: 4-28-86 | Stats (AA): 9.4 K/9 | 3.5 BB/9 | 41 1/3 IP | 1.52 ERA | 2.50 FIP | 1.02 WHIP | .0 Hr/9 | 5.7 H/9 | .261 BABIP
Moskos is the infamous prospect that was picked ahead of Matt Wieters because they didn’t want to pay. Well, Wieters is in the majors with productions nowhere near the hype while Moskos struggles in the minors. Moskos dominated Double-A with the aide of a .261 BABIP and a strong strikeout rate (9.4 K/9). However, Triple-A was a different story.
- AAA: 9.3 K/9 | 10.4 BB/9 | 17 1/3 IP | 19 games | 2.65 WHIP | 1.6 Hr/9 | 13.5 H/9 | 4.27 BABIP
That’s not pretty. He’s a two-pitch power reliever throwing a 95 MPH fastball and a power slider. Upside is a closer, or back end starter.
#3 Tony Sanchez | C | D.o.B: 5-20-88 | Stats (A+): .314/.416/.454 | 207 AB | 21 XBH | 4 Hr | .140 ISO | 2/1 SB/CS | 41:28 K:BB | .367 BABIP
Baseball America calls him an “outstanding defensive catcher with soft hands,” along with having a “strong arm” and “good ball-blocking skills.” Another grammatically confusing sentence brought to you by Baseball America, “[Sanchez] should have solid-average power.” Translated, Sanchez could hit 10 to 15 home runs and looks like Jose Molina with lesser defense.
#6 Starling Marte | CF | D.o.B: 10-9-89 | Stats (A+): .315/.386/.432 | 222 AB | 21 XBH | 0 Hr | .117 ISO | 22/8 SB/CS | 59:12 K:BB | .424 BABIP
A five-tool prospect, Marte has plus-plus speed that translates to some steals and good defense in center field. His swing produces a fair amount of line-drives. Still very raw and statistically relied upon an unstable .424 BABIP to increase his slash line. There are still to many questions to make a fair comparison.
#7 Tim Alderson | RHP | D.o.B: 11-3-88 | Stats (A+/AA): 5.9 K/9 | 2.8 BB/9 | 128 1/3 IP | 6.03 ERA | 4.83 FIP (A+); 4.47 FIP (AA) | 1.55 WHIP | 1.1 Hr/9 | 11.2 H/9 | .333 BABIP (A+); .345 BABIP (AA)
I once wrote a Scouting the Unknown article praising Alderson. Now, I might have to say that Alderson was a cheap price for the Giants to receive Freddy Sanchez. Alderson has a downward trending strikeout rate, and this year was the worst at 5.9 K/9. The control is still there, but he isn’t fooling anyone now. Also, he is giving up too many home runs (1.1 Hr/9) along with too many hits (11.2 H/9). Still young, I’m not going to sing praises for this prospect until he can dominate a level. Scouts noticed decreased velocity during the 2009 season. There are more red flags than in China. There are a few bright spots. He had extremely low LOB percentages (LOB%: 55.4 % at High-A; 65.2% at Double-A; normal is about ~70%). Beyond this, I would steer clear while he tries to rebound at Double-A again in 2011.
#15 Bryan Morris | RHP | D.o.B: 3-28-87 | Stats (A+/AA): 8.3 K/9 | 2.6 BB/9 | 133 2/3 IP | 3.03 ERA | 2.01 FIP (A+); 3.87 FIP (AA) | 1.21 WHIP | .6 Hr/9 | 8.3 H/9 | .301 BABIP (A+); .316 BABIP (AA)
Morris was received in the Jason Bay trade. He throws a 91 to 93 MPH fastball that touches 95 MPH, a plus-curve and a mediocre changeup. At this point, he is more exciting than Alderson. There are injury concerns in his past, and a few character blemishes due to a combative/competitive nature. Should not be in the majors until the end of the 2011 season.