Pittsburgh Pirates: Under the Radar Prospects Pushing For a Promotion

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Pittsburgh Pirates
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Right-handed pitcher Travis MacGregor

Travis MacGregor was a former second-round pick by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2016. He was considered one of their better prospects in the late-2010s, ranking as high as the organization’s 16th best prospect going into the 2017 season. However, after missing all of 2019 due to Tommy John surgery, then all of 2020 because of the lost COVID season, and heavily struggling with Altoona in 2021, MacGregor’s future was seriously up in the air.

Things didn’t look much better when he allowed 12 earned runs on four home runs and 12 walks through his first 10.2 innings of the season. However, after a move to the bullpen, MacGregor drastically turned things around and looks like he might be the next guy promoted to Triple-A Indianapolis.

MacGregor’s last 34.1 innings have yielded a 1.83 ERA. 2.75 FIP, and .99 WHIP. MacGregor has struck out over a third of batters, having a 34.7% strikeout rate while cutting his walk rate below 10% to just 7.4%. He’s been very good at silencing the long ball, allowing just two. It’s not as if MacGregor is getting lucky either. His .306 batting average on balls in play is pretty much the league average.

Now would the Pirates promote MacGregor straight from Double-A to the Major Leagues? The Pirates have been pretty aggressive with most of their prospects, and Macgregor is in his age-24 campaign. He could be the next guy up once Cody Bolton receives his call to the show.