Pittsburgh Pirates: Roansy Contreras Wins Award

Altoona Curve pitcher Roansy Contreras as the Binghamton Rumble Ponies hosted Altoona on Tuesday, May 11, 2021. The Ponies lost to the Curve, with a score of 5-0.
Altoona Curve pitcher Roansy Contreras as the Binghamton Rumble Ponies hosted Altoona on Tuesday, May 11, 2021. The Ponies lost to the Curve, with a score of 5-0. /
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gggThe Pittsburgh Pirates have been rebuilding and one recently acquired prospect has won the pitcher of the week award.

With the Pittsburgh Pirates rebuilding and looking towards the future, the club made changes in the player development area and brought in new players.  In trading Jameson Taillon to the New York Yankees, the club acquired four players with one (Miguel Yajure) being a Major League ready player.  One prospect, however, has really shown promise.  That is right-handed pitcher Roansy Contreras.

After pitching 132.1 innings in 2019 at A ball with the Yankees and missing last year because of the pandemic, Contreras has gotten off to a hot start.  He has not allowed a run in 17.2 innings and three starts, with 28 strikeouts.  He has improved his strikeout rate from 21.1 percent to 45.2 percent and has really dominated hitters.  Because of this, he was honored as the Double-A Northwest pitcher of the week. In his start, he allowed no runs and struck out six over 6.2 innings.

Contreras ranked as the Pittsburgh Pirates 15th best prospect per FanGraphs with an average fastball of 92-95 mph and a curveball that spins at 2500 RPM.  However, when watching Contreras this year his fastball is sitting up and he is throwing harder.  The curveball is strong and generate swing and miss.  On his report, FanGraphs wrote

"“Barring continued development of his changeup, which already looks better than I projected a year ago, he won’t have a plus pitch and therefore fits in the No. 4/5 starter area rather than as a plus, mid-rotation type”"

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With Contreras’s fastball now sitting in the upper 90s and his curveball continuing to look like a plus pitch, he may not be tracking more as that mid-rotation type arm.  His results in three starts this year have been outstanding and it’s only a matter of time before he is called up to Triple-A Indianapolis.  Until then, he’s the Double-A pitcher of the week.

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