Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects: 3 Players to Watch at Triple-A

Altoona's Cal Mitchell (5) reacts to a call as the Binghamton Rumble Ponies lost to the Altoona Curve, 5-0, at the Ponies home opener on Tuesday, May 11, 2021.
Altoona's Cal Mitchell (5) reacts to a call as the Binghamton Rumble Ponies lost to the Altoona Curve, 5-0, at the Ponies home opener on Tuesday, May 11, 2021. /
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Mar 1, 2021; Sarasota, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates Cal Mitchell (91) poses during media day at Ed Smith Stadium. Mandatory Credit: MLB Photos via USA Today Sports
Mar 1, 2021; Sarasota, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates Cal Mitchell (91) poses during media day at Ed Smith Stadium. Mandatory Credit: MLB Photos via USA Today Sports /

Outfielder Cal Mitchell

When the Pittsburgh Pirates chose to not protect Cal Mitchell from the Rule 5 Draft earlier this offseason it came as bit of a surprise. While Mitchell is not a slam dunk to be selected when the Rule 5 Draft takes place, there will certainly be teams interested in him.

Mitchell has the tools needed to be a plus defender in the outfield. FanGrpahs gives his speed tool a future value of 40 and his fielding tool a FV of 50. FanGraphs also give both his game power and hit tool a FV of 45.

While Mitchell has fallen on some prospect boards, he still has the potential to, at worst, be a solid fourth outfielder at the Major League level. At worst, Mitchell should be a player who brings a speed element to the table, is a strong defensive outfielder and will make consistent contact at the plate.

Last season he hit for a .280/.330/.429 slash line with a 106 wRC+ in 419 plate appearances across 108 games played at the Double-A level. He made his Triple-A debut late in the season. While Mitchell struggled with Indianapolis, it came in just 21 PAs across 7 games played.

If Mitchell survives the Rule 5 Draft and remains with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he should get a MLB opportunity at some point in 2022. The Pirates have plenty of questions about their outfield outside of Bryan Reynolds. If Mitchell hits well at Indy he should make his MLB in 2022.

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