Fangraphs recently updated their prospect rankings. With the new rankings, Pittsburgh Pirates’ shortstop prospect Liover Peguero now ranks as the 100th best prospect in baseball.
Recently, Fangraphs updated their top 100 prospect list. With many prospects graduating prospect status in the last few weeks, prospects that were once considered borderline top 100 guys are now making the website’s top 100 list. One of those players that was just added to it is Pittsburgh Pirates middle infield prospect Liover Peguero. Fangraphs has been known to have some of the best rankings, as their success rate from ranked prospect to productive MLB player is known to be one of the highest.
Liover Peguero was acquired by the Pirates as the centerpiece in the Starling Marte deal. Before the deal, Peguero was ranked as the Arizona Diamondbacks’ 8th best organizational prospect. Considering that they had the 5th best farm system at the time, Peguero was a fairly underrated prospect among the D-Backs system. They ended 219 with 5 top 100 prospects and a 6th guy that ranked 105. Currently, he ranks as the Pirates’ 6th best prospect. He’s also could be seen as the next guy to take the reigns over at shortstop once the Pittsburgh Pirates are back in competition.
Peguero, after all, is a very talented, and athletic middle infielder. He got off to a hot start at Rookie Ball, batting .364/.410/.559 with 5 long balls, and a 153 wRC+, and .423 wOBA through 156 plate appearances.
Though he wasn’t nearly as productive when he was moved to Low-A, he still batted for a respectable .262/.333/.357 line, all coming to a 101 wRC+. Plus, Peguero saw his plate discipline become better after the promotion. The shortstop saw his strikeout rate go from 21.8% at Rookie Ball to 18.8%, and his walk rate increased from 7.7% to 8.8%.
Peguero is a good base runner. Fangraphs gives his speed a 60 grade, but a future of 55, which still is above average. Fielding wise, he’s projected to be an above-average fielder with a 55 future fielding grade, and 55 arm grade.
Hit wise, he only has a 40 future game power, and 50 future raw power grades. However, he did have an average exit velocity of 90 MPH. That, combined with his 60 future hit grade, plus speed, and he should rack up high doubles totals. Think of Francisco Lindor through his first two years of his career. He batted .306/.354/.454 and averaged 30 doubles and 15-18 home runs a season. He also had a similar exit velo to Peguero as well at 89.2 MPH.
Peguero is far from done moving up the rankings this year. Jesus Luzardo, A.J. Puk, Brendan Rogers, and Sean Murphy are all on the verge of losing prospect status. This could move Peguero up two, or even three more spots before the end of the 2020 season.
This now gives the Pirates 6, top 100 prospects. The other five being Ke’Bryan Hayes (30), Oneil Cruz (32), Travis Swaggerty (62), Tahnaj Thomas (79), and Nick Gonzalez (88). Though he’s no longer a prospect, I should mention that Mitch Keller barely graduated prospect status, and entered 2020 ranked as the Pirates’ 3rd best prospect, and the 34th best in baseball. Right now, the Pirates are ranked with the 6th best farm system per Fangraphs.
However, though they rank 6th, they have the most top 100 prospects of any MLB team currently. Just to show how big of steps Ben Cherington has taken the organization so far, the Pirates ended 2019 as the 9th best prospect system and has moved it up three spaces in less than a year. The Pirates’ farm could be a top 5 or better system by the beginning of September as the trade deadline is just around the corner.