One of the first players the Pittsburgh Pirates acquired under Ben Cherington had a big week.
The Pittsburgh Pirates acquired shortstop Liover Peguero along with starting pitcher Brennan Malone as part of the Starling Marte trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks in January of 2020. Peguero ranks as the Pirates’ #4 overall prospect and has recently been named the High-A East Player of the Week by Minor League Baseball.
The 20-year old shortstop becomes the first Greensboro Grasshopper to earn Player of the Week honors after extending his hit streak to seven games with a pair of home runs last night in the Grasshopper’s 7-4 victory over the Winston-Salem Dash, the Chicago White Sox High-A affiliate. In those seven games Peguero was 12-30 with seven extra-base hits along with 12 RBI and 9 runs scored.
On the year Peguero has posted a slash line of .266/.344/.786 but most notable has been his recent power surge that secured his Player of the Week honors, belting four home runs in the last four days. Throughout his Minor League career with the Diamondbacks, Peguero never hit more than 5 home runs from 2018-2020. After last night’s contest, he has now hit 11 home runs through his first 269 plate appearances in 2021. Peguero has also put his speed on display this season with 17 stolen bases through 58 games.
The tandem of Peguero and Pirates’ #1 overall prospect Nick Gonzales has been great up the middle for the Grasshoppers this season as Gonzales projects to be the Pirates’ long-term second baseman. The Pirates’ front office has developed a strong middle infield and it will be interesting to see how the future infield of the Pittsburgh Pirates will play out moving forward.
It remains to be seen how much time and room for error the organization will give #3 overall prospect Oneil Cruz at the shortstop position before potentially moving him to a corner outfield spot. Cruz has committed 12 errors in 42 games this season with AA Altoona and his 6’7″ frame may not be suited for a middle infield position. There is a very good chance the Peguero and Gonzales tandem will move up through the minor league system together and become the Pirates’ middle infield of the future.
Liover Peguero may be calling for a potential promotion to AA Altoona himself after his outstanding performance this past week, earning High-A East Player of the Week by Minor League Baseball.