Pittsburgh Pirates Prospects Set For Triple-A Debut in 2022


The Pittsburgh Pirates Triple-A roster should stay strong throughout the year with many prospects reaching the minor’s highest level.

With talent in the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system, it’s easy to see why many see them being true contenders by 2023. Many of their higher-end prospects will start 2022 within the upper levels of the minor leagues. Triple-A will start the year with guys like Roansy Contreras, Oneil Cruz, Travis Swaggerty, and Matt Fraizer, just to name a few near MLB ready names. Over a half-dozen, more near MLB ready players will start the year at Triple-A next season.

However, even though Indianapolis will see many players graduate to the Major Leagues next season, the amount of talent coming up the pipeline means that the Triple-A roster should stay very strong throughout the 2022 season. With Double-A and High-A also boasting strong rosters, talent will be moving up the system at a quick rate next season.

If they are healthy and their performances don’t take a nose-dive off a cliff, a trio of Pittsburgh Pirates top prospects will make their Triple-A debut sometime next season. The double-play duo of Liover Peguero and Nick Gonzales is one of the best throughout the minor leagues. Quinn Priester is also a very highly regarded pitching prospect. They should get their starts at Double-A next season but should move up to Triple-A possibly in late summer.

Priester, Gonzales, and Peguero had great years at High-A Greensboro. They also all caught on fire in the second half of the season. Each brings a boatload of talent to the table and has performed well throughout the minor leagues, so it might even be possible to see them make their MLB debut, similar to Cruz and Contreras at the very end of 2021.

Another pitcher who could eventually join Priester at Triple-A Indianapolis is right-hander Michael Burrows. Burrows increased his prospect stock after a great 2021 season. FanGraphs ranks him as their 12th best prospect. He brings a high-spin curve and fastball to the table, but needs to further refine his changeup.

Ricky DeVito is yet another right-handed pitcher we may see in the majors at the tail-end of 2022. He’s going into his age-23 season and will be 24-years-old by the end of 2022. Although he is currently slated to start the year at Altoona, his time with the Double-A club might be short lived given his age.

DeVito has displayed a solid pitch mix, including a 70-grade splitter. His stuff might play out of the bullpen, but if DeVito can add a tick of velo to his four-seamer and show he can carry the velocity through 5-6 innings, he’d be a very underrated arm who could be a long term arm to the rotation.

Indianapolis’ outfield should also see many newcomers. Currently they’re slated to start the year with a mix of Swaggerty, Fraizer, Jack Sowinski, and Canaan Smith-Njigba. However those four could be part of the major league roster by mid-summer. Someone has to take over the outfield once they’re all in the majors and the Pirates have plenty of options.

New addition Connor Scott should be part of Altoona’s outfield. He, like Gonzales, Peguero, and Priester, had a great second half of the season, but with the Miami Marlins’ High-A affiliate. Scott finished with a quality 112 wRC+ last season and brings speed, power, and a glove that can stick in centerfield. Even though his hit tool is a bit on the questionable side, he has enough power to hit 15+ home runs in the future and provide quality outfield defense.

One outfield prospect who had a career year in 2021 was Lolo Sanchez. He’s another figure who is slated to be part of Altoona’s line-up. Although Sanchez played in the hitter friendly environment in Greensboro, he was a much better hitter in away games. He had a solid .769 OPS at Greensboro, but .876 OPS away. Sanchez still has to answer some questions about if his raw power is enough to be a quality hitter, but he has speed and a glove that could remain in center field. Plus, he’s always gotten on base at a healthy rate, which helps his great speed play up.

One unranked prospect that may become part of Triple-A’s outfield alignment is Mike Jarvis. A 6th round pick, Jarvis profiles similarly to former Pirates utility man Adam Frazier; a speedy, contact-oriented player who plays multiple positions both in the infield and outfield. Though in contrast, Jarvis brings a better ability to reach base and a bit more power.

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The amount of talent coming up through the farm system is great to see. Once the prospects at Triple-A are in the majors, they’ll be replaced with talent from Double-A. The system is stocked with near-MLB-ready talent, and many of the team’s best prospects should at least make their Triple-A debut in 2022.