MLB Pipeline's Jim Callis and Sam Dykstra recently listed Pittsburgh Pirates outfield prospect Estuar Suero as a breakout prospect in 2024
MLB recently published an article by Jim Callis and Sam Dykstra listing a potential breakout prospect for each team. That includes the Pittsburgh Pirates. Callis and Dykstra list outfield prospect Estuar Suero as the Pirates' breakout prospect. Suero was acquired by the Pirates from the San Diego Padres, along with Jackson Wolf and Alfonso Rivas, at the trade deadline for Rich Hill and Ji-Man Choi.
Suero only stepped to the plate 218 times for the Padres' Arizona Complex League and the Pirates' Florida Complex League affiliates. But he only batted .216/.326/.341 with a .326 wOBA, and 74 wRC+. Suero struck out 28% of the time, but he also walked in 12.8% of his plate appearances.
As the article mentions, Suero cut his strikeout rate by nearly 10% after getting traded. He had a 30.6% rate for the Padres in 160 plate appearances but cut that to 20.7% with the Pirates in 58 PAs. He also upped his walk rate by over double, going from 10% to 20.7% after the trade. Overall, Suero saw his wRC+ go from 65 to 99.
Suero is a tall, 6'5", 180-pound prospect, giving him some physical projection. He has long levers, as Callis and Dykstra state, but he also can generate good power from his bat speed. Suero is a good runner, and both MLB Pipeline and FanGraphs believe he has a chance to stick in center field long-term. He's shown a good feel for the outfield.
Both Callis and Dykstra predicted breakout prospects for each team last year around this time, and eight of their breakout candidates ended up in MLB Pipeline's top 100 list. Their prediction for the Pirates' last off-season was outfielder Shalin Polanco, who had a good year at Bradenton, and it could have been even better had he not gotten injured.
I think Suero is a good pick for a breakout prospect next year. He certainly has a very high ceiling and still has room to fill out his frame. In my opinion, however, this prediction is a year too early. He is only going to be 18 next year and doesn't turn 19 until the very end of August. It's not a guarantee that he plays at Bradenton next season. But I would not be surprised if he has a good season next year.