In a standout season for the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system, two young talents have made their mark as South Atlantic League All-Stars. Tsung-Che Cheng, the 21-year-old shortstop, and 23-year-old Jase Bowen have been standout performers this year. It is always good to see accolades coming in for the prospects who we hope to see on the Big League roster one day.
Cheng has posted impressive numbers with a .308 batting average, a .406 on-base percentage, and a .575 slugging percentage, resulting in an OPS of .981 across 57 games. His hitting ability, speed, and arm strength have stood out. While there are questions about his range at shortstop, Cheng's consistency and reliability in the field cannot be denied.
Jase Bowen, at 23, has been a force at the plate. His OPS hovers around .800, backed by 23 home runs and 26 stolen bases. Bowen's power and versatility have been key to the team's success this season. Posting 20-20 seasons is always something that will catch the attention of baseball fans.
This type of season should not be that suprising when looking at Bowen. He was an 11th round pick in 2019 and signed for a deal that was about $250,000 more than slotted. The reason he was a tough sign was that he was also commited to play defensive back at Michigan State. So while he is 23, it was somewhat expected for him to take a little bit more time to develop being he was so committed to a potential football career as well. Cheng signed as an International Free Agent out of Taiwan during the 2019 signing period.
Cheng and Bowen could be a part of the future of the Pittsburgh Pirates, both have been notable since joining the Organization.
Their impressive performances in the South Atlantic League offer optimism for their futures. These two rising prospects are undoubtedly players to watch as they progress toward the Major Leagues, giving Pirates fans a few more prospects to be excited about and what could lie ahead.