Pittsburgh Pirates Triple-A players who could soon get promoted to the Major Leagues

Who are some players currently at Triple-A who could soon get promoted to the Pittsburgh Pirates?
Pittsburgh Pirates v Cincinnati Reds
Pittsburgh Pirates v Cincinnati Reds / Andy Lyons/GettyImages
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Eric Lauer

The Pirates signed Eric Lauer this off-season to help provide some depth they could turn to. Right now, they might need to turn to that depth. With Marco Gonzales on the IL and Quinn Priester struggling, it might be time to see what Lauer has. After all, he’s done great at Indy so far this year.

Last year, Lauer struggled badly, working to a 6.59 ERA, 7.41 FIP, and 1.67 WHIP. He had a poor 20.4% strikeout rate and 11.4% walk rate, but more worrisome was the amount of home runs he was giving up. Lauer had a 3.09 HR/9 rate. His barrel rate was 13.7%, which, for reference, is about what Atlanta Braves third baseman Austin Riley put up last year. But Lauer was a very effective arm in 2021-2022, owning a 3.47 ERA, 4.30 FIP, and 1.19 WHIP with a much more manageable 23.8% strikeout rate, 8.7% walk rate, and 1.40 HR/9.

Lauer wasn’t signed until late into Spring Training. The deal wasn’t official until March 25th. Lauer may have had a chance for a long relief role to open the year had he signed earlier. Regardless, he has been fantastic since getting sent to Triple-A. He has pitched 19 innings, striking out 22 batters, walking just seven, and letting up one home run. Lauer has lowered his exit velocity to 87.1 MPH and barrel rate to 8.3%. 

The Pirates do great at getting the most out of veteran soft-tossing left-handed pitchers, so why not see what they can do with Lauer? He’s been good to start the year and is stretched out to take on a regular starting role. In his most recent outing, he tossed five perfect innings with eight strikeouts.