Pittsburgh Pirates Minor Notes: Bradenton and Mitch Keller

Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /

Here are some minor league notes from the Pittsburgh Pirates.  Bradenton was the only team left playing in the playoffs.

High-A Bradenton

The Pittsburgh Pirates High-A affiliate, the Bradenton Mauraders, won the Florida State League Championship last night.  The Marauders were facing off against the New York Yankee’s High-A affiliate.  The Maruaders won game four to lock up the give game series.  J.T. Brubaker was Bradenton’s winnings pitcher.  He pitched six strong innings giving up one earned run while striking out five.  He was followed up by right-handed pitcher Tanner Anderson who threw three shutout innings to win the game.

The Tampa Yankees were are fairly loaded team.  They had two of the top infield prospects in baseball in their lineup.  Jorge Mateo the team’s second baseman was ranked as the Yankees’ number three prospect.  Meanwhile Gleyber Torres, the Tampa Yankees shortstop, was the headline player.  Torres is considered the New York Yankees number two prospect.  What makes him the headline player is that he was actually acquired by the New York Yankees off the Chicago Cubs for Aroldis Chapman.

However, the Marauders did a great job of limiting those two top prospects. Mateo batted an abysmal .100 in the championship series, while Torres hit a pedestrian .242.

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The other interesting prospect on the Tampa Yankees’ team was Tito Polo.  Polo was just traded there about two weeks ago by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He and Stephen Tarpley were dealt in order to complete the Ivan Nova deal.  Kind of interesting that he left the Marauders and joined the team they would be facing in the FSL Championship.  Polo batted .286 for the Yankees.

Mitch Keller, and other prospects:

Okay enough about the Yankees, and more about the Marauders.  The player on the series had to be Mitch Keller.  He threw eight shutout innings in game three.  That was the first time all season that Keller pitched into the 8th inning. Yeudy Garcia also pitched very well for the Marauders. The hard thrower pitched seven innings and only gave up one earned run in game two.

Furthermore, the most impressive hitters were Jordan Luplow and Connor Joe. Two 2014 draft picks who have not exactly panned out thus far as prospect, may have just broke through.  Luplow hit three home runs in the series, batted .353 and also had seven runs batted in.  Joe put up very similar numbers.  He also had three home runs and sevens runs batted in.  The former competitive balance first round pick did bat to a lower average, but still hit a strong .333.

Finally where are these guys ranked? Luplow is a top 30 prospect for the Pittsburgh Pirates.  Yeudy Garcia is a rising prospect in the Pittsburgh Pirates system and is currently ranked as the Pittsburgh Pirates #12 prospect on MLB Pipeline.  Mitch Keller will be the Pittsburgh Pirates best pitching prospect entering the 2017 season.

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Finally do you think Connor Joe and Jordan Luplow will turn the corner and become legitimate prospects at Double-A Altoona next season?  If so, Comment Below!

Furthermore, all stats are courtesy on Baseball Reference