Pittsburgh Pirates News: Team Makes First Cuts of the Spring

Feb 24, 2021; Bradenton, Florida, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Roansy Contreras (59) warms up during spring training at Pirate City. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 24, 2021; Bradenton, Florida, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Roansy Contreras (59) warms up during spring training at Pirate City. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports /
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Tuesday afternoon the Pittsburgh Pirates made their first roster cuts of the spring, trimming their MLB camp roster by 15 players

With Opening Day 2021 just 15 days away for the Pittsburgh Pirates the team has made their first cuts of the spring. Tuesday afternoon, the Pirates made 15 cuts to their roster in MLB camp. With these cuts the Pirates now have 59 players in MLB camp, this includes a trio of pitchers (Austin Davis, Blake Cederlind, Jose Soriano) who will start the 2021 season on the injured list.

Of the 15 players that were cut on Tuesday five of them were on the 40-man roster. These five players are shortsotp prospect Oneil Cruz, infield prospect Rodolfo Castro, and pitch prospects Max Kranick, Nick Mears and Roansy Contreras.

All five of these players should start the season at the team’s alternate training site. When the minor league season begins, Cruz and Castro will likely be the double play duo for Double-A Altoona, while both players also get playing time in the outfield and Castro at third base. Kranick and Contreras are both likely ticketed for Altoona’s starting rotation, while Mears will be in the bullpen for Triple-A Indianapolis.

The Pittsburgh Pirates also reassigned 10 players to their minor league complex at Pirate City in Bradenton. These 10 players were pitchers Cody Bolton, Jandel Gustave and Quinn Priester, catcher Jason Delay, infielder Nick Gonzales, Liover Peguero and Mason Martin, and outfielders Cal Mitchell, Cannan Smith-Njigba and Travis Swaggerty.

When the minor league season begins, Bolton will be in the starting rotation for Triple-A Indianapolis while Gustave is in their bullpen. Bolton is one of the top pitching prospect the Pittsburgh Pirates have and he should join the starting rotation before the end of the season.

The highly touted Priester who had a big offseason will start the season with either Low-A Bradenton or High-A Greensboro. The trio of Mitchell, Smith-Njigba and Swaggerty could give Double-A Altoona one of the best outfields in all of minor league baseball, with Swaggerty have a legitimate chance of making his MLB debut this season. Delay will likely join them at Double-A.

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Both Gonzales and Martin could start the season with High-A Greensboro, depending on how aggressive the Pirate front office wants to be with Gonzales. Hopefully, Ben Cherington and company will be aggressive the 7th overall pick in the 2020 draft as he could be a MLB regular by next summer.

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