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Pirates Minor League Updates: Ashcraft Shines in Triple-A Debut, Burrows Makes Return

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Mike Burrows, Pittsburgh Pirates, Pirates prospects

This is one in a weekly update on the Pittsburgh Pirates’ top 10 prospects.

In the major leagues, Paul Skenes continued to live up to his potential with two excellent starts for the Pirates.

Down on the farm, Braxton Ashcraft had a solid Triple-A debut and Mike Burrows pitched for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery last season.

Full updates on the top 10:

1. RHP Paul Skenes (Pittsburgh Pirates)

  • Weekly stats: 1-0, 0.73 ERA, 12.1 innings, one run, 11 hits, one walk, 15 strikeouts, two appearances, two starts
  • 2024 stats (MLB): 4-0, 2.29 ERA, 39.1 innings, 10 runs, 32 hits, seven walks, 53 strikeouts, seven appearances/seven starts

Simply put, Skenes continued to shove in his two starts. The rookie tossed a career-high 6.1 innings and shutout the St. Louis Cardinals during the Pirates’ road trip. He then kept his record spotless with six-strong innings against the Reds at PNC Park on Monday.

2. INF Termarr Johnson (High-A Greensboro)

  • Weekly stats: .261/.419/.304, 6 for 23, one double, two RBIs, three steals, six games
  • 2024 stats: .219/.389/.383, 44 for 201, 10 doubles, one triple, five home runs, 24 RBIs, 10 steals, 60 games

Johnson continued to excel at getting on base last week in Greensboro and also showed off some speed by swiping three bases. He continues to break out of his slump to start the season.

3. RHP Bubba Chandler (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: 0-0, 12.26 ERA, 3.2 hits, five runs, six hits, one walk, seven strikeouts, one start/one appearance
  • 2024 stats: 2-5, 5.13 ERA, 40.1 innings, 26 runs (23 earned), 35 hits, 20 walks, 47 strikeouts, 12 appearances/10 starts

Chandler was roughed up in his lone outing of the week for the Curve on Saturday. He did, however, record seven strikeouts against one walk. His performance has been up and down this season.

4. LHP Anthony Solometo (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: 0-0, 9.00 ERA, three innings, three runs, three hits, one walk, three strikeouts, one appearance/one start
  • 2024 stats: 0-4, 6.27 ERA, 33 innings, 23 runs, 32 hits, 21 walks, 24 strikeouts, 13 appearances/10 starts

The 2024 season continues to be a struggle for the Pirates’ No. 4 prospect. In addition to his shaky line in his latest start, Solometo also hit a pair of batters.

5. RHP Thomas Harrington (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: 0-1, 0.90 ERA, 10 innings, six runs (one eared), 11 hits, one walk, 10 strikeouts, two appearances/two starts
  • 2024 stats: 0-1, 2.86 ERA, 34.2 innings, 18 runs (11 earned), 32 hits, three walks, 36 strikeouts, eight appearances/seven starts

Harrington had an interesting week as he allowed six runs and a pair of home runs in his first start, though only one run was earned. He rebounded nicely in his second start and tossed five shutout innings of one-hit ball.

6. RHP Braxton Ashcraft (Triple-A Indianapolis)

  • Weekly stats: 1-0, 1.50 ERA, six innings, one run, three hits, no walks, four strikeouts, one appearances/one start
  • 2024 stats: 3-2, 3.47 ERA, 59.2 innings, 25 runs (23 earned), 54 hits, eight walks, 67 strikeouts, 12 appearances/11 starts

Ashcraft was promoted to Indianapolis after a great showing with Double-A Altoona and pitched very well in his Triple-A debut. The right-hander is already on the Pirates’ 40-man roster and is inching closer to the big leagues.

7. INF Mitch Jebb (High-A Greensboro)

  • Weekly stats: .211/.348/.368, 4 for 19, one double, one triple, two steals, five games
  • 2024 stats: .200/.270/.298, 41 for 205, four doubles, two triples, four home runs, 29 RBIs, 11 steals, 52 games

Jebb continues to try and break out of his prolonged slump and showed at least some level of encouragement by recording hits in four of his five games played last week.

8. INF Tsung-Che Cheng (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: .125/.333/.125, 2 for 16, two RBIs, two steals, six games
  • 2024 stats: .221/.342/.363, 42 for 174, six doubles, seven home runs, 28 RBIs, 12 steals, 56 games

Cheng was on fire in the last update but cooled considerably in his latest action in Altoona. As has been the case with most of the Pirates’ top hitting prospects, Cheng has been inconsistent this year.

9. INF Jack Brannigan (High-A Greensboro)

  • Weekly stats: DID NOT PLAY — STILL ON 7-DAY INJURED LIST
  • 2024 stats: .217/.357/.394, 38 for 175, eight doubles, one triple, seven home runs, 21 RBIs, nine steals, 48 games

Brannigan remains on the seven-day injured list with Greensboro.

10. RHP Mike Burrows (FCL Pirates*)

  • Weekly stats: 1.2 innings, three runs, one hit, two walks, no strikeouts, one appearance/one start
  • 2024 stats: 0-1, 20.25 ERA, 1.2 innings, three runs, one hit, two walks, no strikeouts, one appearance/one start

For the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery, Burrows took the mound to start a rehab assignment with the FCL Pirates.

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