Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects: Checking in on Altoona’s Loaded Lineup

Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /
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Pittsburgh Pirates
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

The Infielders

Entering the 2021 season, the Pittsburgh Pirates placed their two top power prospects with the Curve in Mason Martin and Oneil Cruz.  There would also be Ji-Hwan Bae another top infield prospect in the system.  All three players have had strong seasons for the Curve.

Before going on the injured list, Oneil Cruz was the team’s starting shortstop while putting up great numbers. The left-handed slugger was batting .289/.349/.887 with 9 home runs in 43 games.  Cruz looked to be on the brink of a midseason promotion before going down with a forearm injury.  The good news is he is working his way back to game action.

First baseman Mason Martin has continued to show high-level power potential. The first baseman has hit countless bombs into Lakemont Park, which sits just outside the rightfield wall at the Curve’s Stadium.  Martin is currently second in the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system in home runs with 19 on the year.

Speedy middle infielder Ji-Hwan Bae has started to show some pop of his own with a .166 iso. This is a significant jump in Bae’s raw power numbers after having a .077 in 2018 and a .107 in 2019. Overall, he has been another solid batter slashing .268/.332/.434.  Bae also has excellent speed, stealing 14 bases on the year.  With this speed, the Bucs are starting to give Bae some time in the outfield as well.