Pittsburgh Pirates Monday Minute: Top 100 Prospects

Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports /

On some Mondays, Rum Bunter will take a look at a popular topic on the Pittsburgh Pirates and give some thoughts on it in a quick article.

This week’s Monday Minute will be talking about the prospects all throughout the system.  We will take a look at Baseball America’s mid-season top 100 list, players who made the list, and players who are not on it, but most likely got consideration.

Baseball America released their mid-season top 100 list this past week, and the Pittsburgh Pirates found six of their players on the list.  Tyler Glasnow is now ranked as the #6 best prospect in all of baseball.  You can find Austin Meadows right behind him ranked as the #10 prospect. Following Meadows is currently the most talked about name in Pittsburgh, as Josh Bell ranked at #38.  The tam at Baseball America then ranked two Pittsburgh Pirates in Kevin Newman and Mitch Keller back-to-back at #51 and #52.  The last Pirate on the list is 2015 first round pick Ke’Bryan Hayes at #72.

Some thoughts on the rankings:

Josh Bell plays first base, and it is rare to see first base prospects ranked very high on prospect lists.  With that, #38 seems low for a guy hitting .324 in AAA.  With that being said, if he would still be playing right-field he likely would have been higher up on the list.  First baseman do not get a lot of recognition for their games, and they do not need to be as well-rounded, such as prospects at other positions.

Meadows and Glasnow are the clear-cut top prospects in the organization, Glasnow could be coming off this list shortly if he ends up sticking in the big leagues for the second half of the year.

Kevin Newman and Mitch Keller have burst onto the scene in terms of the minor leagues. Newman has absolutely raked at High-A and Double-A, hitting a combined .350 between the two. He also has proven that he can play shortstop so far.  Keller was the most dominant pitcher in the minors for the first month of the season, pitching well under a 1.00 ERA.  The last month has not been as dominant, but he still is producing strong results.  The biggest thing is his command, on the year he has only walked 11 batters while striking out 91 batters in 81 innings.  He is striking out more than one hitter per inning and is showing great control, all at the age of 20!

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Ke’Bryan Hayes is not having an eye-popping season, but he is putting up a strong season at Low-A in his first full season of baseball.  He is only batting .263, but he is showing off his tools, and he is doing it at a very young age.  Expect a strong second half from Hayes as he continues to mature.

Players left off? Harold Ramirez was ranked at #96 on the preseason list by Baseball America.  He is having another strong year batting batting .304 while posting an OPS of .768, and he is playing solid defense in the outfield.  The only explanation I can come up with is that he was just passed up by other players having breakout years.  Harold Ramirez is not having an eye popping year, he hits around .300 every year, maybe he is just being over shadowed by others.  Reese McGuire finds himself off the list for the first time since being drafted.  McGuire has been hitting around .255 all season at Double-A and is still not showing any power.  McGuire’s defense is off the charts, however his bat is keeping him from being on the top 100.

Related Story: Analysis on Kevin Newman

Jameson Taillon would have been a top 25 prospect on the list, but he most likely will find himself in the Major Leagues for the rest of the year.  Elias Diaz has been hurt all season and is working his way back now.  He would have had a shot at being on the list if he were healthy and putting up his typical numbers.

What do you think of the rankings?  Comment below