Pittsburgh Pirates: Minor Leaguers Who Could Get Promoted Next

Which Pirate prospects could be promoted to the next level soon?

Feb 22, 2023; Bradenton, FL, USA;  Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Matt Gorski (76) poses for photos
Feb 22, 2023; Bradenton, FL, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Matt Gorski (76) poses for photos / Dave Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
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Matt Gorski

Matt Gorski is one of the Pirates’ more notable outfield prospects. Gorski had an outstanding 2022 season that saw him debut at Triple-A. However, it was only for one game before he was sent back to Altoona to start the 2023 season. He would have likely gotten an extended look at Indy had it not been for an injury.

Gorski’s numbers on the season don’t stand out as a prime candidate for a promotion. He’s slashing .265/.316/.461 through 225 plate appearances. Gorski has nine home runs and a .196 isolated slugging percentage. But he’s only walked in 6.2% of his plate appearances while striking out nearly a quarter of the time (24.8% strikeout rate). Gorski overall has a respectable .343 wOBA and 105 wRC+.

But since the start of May, Gorski has been on a tear. He’s slashing .299/.343/.503 with a .372 wOBA, and 123 wRC+. Gorski’s walk rate is still well below average at just 5.8%, but his strikeout rate of 22.7% is a major improvement from prior seasons. Gorski is also hitting for above-average power with a .204 ISO and seven home runs in 172 plate appearances (a rate of 24 home runs in 600 PAs).

Gorski has played all three outfield positions, with center field being his primary spot. He has also played a handful of games at first base, both this year and throughout his career, and has now taken up a few games at second base. Granted, he only has 23 innings logged at the keystone, so it’s not as if second base is becoming his primary position. But he’s consistently gotten above-average grades for his defense in the grass. Plus, he has a strong enough arm to play any of the three outfield spots.

Gorski’s hot streak warrants a bump to Triple-A Indy. Even though he’s old enough, you could make the argument that he should go straight to the major leagues (he is 25), I’d at least like to see him get moved to the next minor league level. He’s a power/speed threat with a good glove in the outfield and at first base.