Starting pitcher Quinn Priester
If Burrows isn’t the top pitching prospect in the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system, then it’s 2019 first-round pick Quinn Priester. Like Burrows, Priester entered the season with questions to answer and, also like Burrows, he’s done so with flying colors.
There were questions about Priester’s fastball movement entering the season. His fastball has improved this season, he’s added a sinker, and his curveball has made a jump, becoming a potential elite pitch.
Priester started the season on the injured list, which has limited him to just 12 starts for the Double-A Altoona Curve. In these 12 starts Priester has been terrific. He’s pitched 58.2 innings, posting a 2.45 ERA, 3.19 FIP, 6.9% walk rate, 24.8% strikeout rate, and he’s allowed just three home runs.
Priester has worked hard this season to improve his pitches and make the jump from the low minors to the upper minors successfully. If the Pittsburgh Pirates truly want to build a player centric culture, a good way to do that is to reward players such as Priester with MLB time in September.
In theory, a starting rotation that has Burrows and Priester joining Roansy Contreras at the top should be a very strong one. By early next summer this could be the top three in the Pirate starting rotation, and a good way to help get both Burrows and Priester some early MLB experience in preparation for that would be to give them each at least one start in the majors this month.