6-1-22 By Justin Verno (aka @JV_PITT on Twitter)
Before I get this started, I have a question: why do fans actively root against their own prospects? Since I’ve been giving these updates, I’ve seen fans root against a lot of them. Nick Gonzales is a big one. Also Oneil Cruz. I’ve seen guys pit Quinn Priester vs Michael Burrows, going out of their way to make one sound bad and the other great. I’ve seen fans hate on Henry Davis. Liover Pegeuro is another one I see hated on a lot. Personally, I’ve been accused of doing this with Marcano Tucapita, and it’s true: he’s not my favorite prospect, but I’m not rooting for him to fail.
I’ve even seen people root against every single one of Neal Huntington’s or Ben Cherington’s kids. The latest is Mason Martin. People either love or hate this kid; there really doesn’t seem to be a lot in between.
I’d love to hear what everyone thinks. Are people wanting to sound smart? Do they just want to be able to tell us they told us so? Are people just miserable? I’m telling you, I’d love some input.
In the meantime, here’s how it went last week:
5-Quinn Priester-no stats yet
10-Bubba Chandler No stats
*no stat this week*
15-Anthony Solometo- No stats
19- Hudson Head
A Few quick thoughts-
Why are you still here?
Liover Peguero continues to be the model of consistency. His BA, OPS and slugging have moved an average of a point a week the last three weeks. His K rate has dropped 4%. His wRC+ has been between 142 and 137 the last four weeks. Why on earth is he still in AA?
Michael Burrows has been just dominate. His ERA and WHIP have dropped to 1.90 and 0.87 on the season. Look, I get he’s had some injury concerns and they will likely limit his innings while building his arm. He’s barely been challenged in AA. He looks like a top 100 starter and we should be seeing a bump to 50 or even 55 soon here. Get him to AAA.
Ji-hwan Bae. Along with Peguero, he’s been steady as can be, even raising the ante here. Earlier in the week someone on Twitter made fun of Mason Martin noting that Bae, “LOL” as they put it, now had a higher OPS. Here’s the thing: Bae’s OPS is .884 and in making that joke they are ignoring that Bae looks good. He’s looking like a 50 FV prospect. Whatever was holding the scouts back on giving Bae a 50 grade, it’s time to reevaluate. Get him to PNC.
Connor Scott. Scott hasn’t been as good as the first three I mentioned, BUT he looks good and an argument could be made he’s ready for the next step.
Well alright then,
Travis Swagerty. Not that Travis ripped it up this week, but all in all the resurgence is still on track. I’m not sure what ailed him earlier. Timing? But he seems on track now.
Jared Jones. 50%. That’s the percentage of hitters he faced that he struck out in his last outing. Jones stuff is simply fantastic but he HAS to find the plate more consistently. Once he does that? Look out.
Does anyone have the time?
I do. It’s time to call up you know who. Stop looking at his battering average on the season as it’s going to disappoint you. Here’s what we need to know: his plate discipline is back and he’s hitting the ball hard. It’s not just that his walk rate is up to 12.5%, he’s also got that K rate down to 25.1%. I think it’s clear he was pushing to get back to Pittsburgh with every swing early on.
Don’t worry about his glove. His errors are mostly throwing errors and that’s something they can work on to PNC. His range is actually pretty good.
The sooner you get the kid to Pittsburgh, the sooner you can get that extension agreed on, right? #FreeOneilCruz