Alen Hanson has used a .323/.385/.587 first half to get himself into baseball’s top 50 prospects, according to Baseball America. The site released its mid season top 50 list, and four Pirates made it. Gerrit Cole is the Bucco farmhand highest on the list at number seven. Jameson Taillon isn’t far behind at number 15. Starling Marte shows up at number 36 and Hanson makes his top 50 debut at number 40.
If you do some simple math, you’ll see that the Pirates are 1/30th of the league, which is 3.3%. They possess 8% of the top 50 prospects, so they’re ahead of the curve a bit here.
Marte won’t be a prospect for much longer, and chances are Cole will lose the prospect title around June of next year as well. After the top four or five guys in the system, it gets pretty thin. The Pirates will be depending on guys like Josh Bell and Alex Dickerson to live up to their hype as well as hoping they get more surprises like Alen Hanson coming around frequently.
For now, the major league team is looking really solid and has a good amount of young talent here. While that takes some pressure off the farm system, it’s still very important for the Pirates to have a strong group of prospects. They aren’t going to be able to sign many guys long term, so they are going to have to count on getting production from prospects that they call up on a year to year basis.
It’s all good in Pirate land right now, which isn’t something we’ve been able to say much in the last twenty years.