Pittsburgh Pirates 2022 Prospect Outlook: LHP Trey McGough

PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 07: The helmet of Sean Rodriguez #3 of the Pittsburgh Pirates is seen before the National League Wild Card game against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park on October 7, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - OCTOBER 07: The helmet of Sean Rodriguez #3 of the Pittsburgh Pirates is seen before the National League Wild Card game against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park on October 7, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /
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Left-handed pitcher Trey McGough had an under-the-radar season in the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system in 2021. What could 2022 hold for the local product?

During the 2021 season left-handed pitcher Trey McGough put together a sneaky strong season in the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system. After pitching well at both High-A and Double-A in 2021, McGough could be looking to take another step up in 2022.

The 23-year-old McGough was a 24th round pick by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2019. McGough, who will turn 24 later this month, is a local product who hails from Johnstown, PA, and is a graduate of Ferndale High School.

As a local product McGough has savored his time with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Especially with the time he was able to log with the even more local Altoona Curve last season. While he will likely start the 2022 season back in Altoona, if all goes well he should find himself at Triple-A Indianapolis before the end of the season.

McGough started the 2021 season pitching for High-A Greensboro. With the Grasshoppers he posted a 2.00 ERA and a 3.71 FIP in 18 innings pitched across 6 games, one of which was a start. He walked 6.1% of batters faced, struck out 19.7%, limited opposing batters to a .194 batting average against and allowed just a single home run.

The success McGough had at Greensboro got him promoted to Altoona where he pitched 95 innings in 18 starts. McGough repeated his 19.7% strikeout rate at Altoona, while dropping his walk rate to 5.4%. He allowed just 7 home runs (0.66 HR/9), while posting a 3.41 ERA and a 3.55 FIP.

Looking ahead to 2022 McGough will likely start the season back in Altoona. If he can log 8-10 strong starts with the Curve a promotion to Indianapolis should be in the cards. This would put McGough on the doorstep of the major leagues.

If McGough is going to find long-term success as a MLB pitcher it may be out of the bullpen. His stuff projects him to be a back-end of the rotation/bullpen swing man arm. Due to this a permanent move to the bullpen could allow his stuff to play up and improve his success.

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2022 will be a big season for McGough and his long-term plans. If he continues to pitch well as a starter with Altoona and then can repeat that starter success at Indianapolis, he should at least get an opportunity as a starting pitcher in the majors. If this not happen then McGough could see a move to the bullpen in his long-term home.

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