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Pirates Prospect Watch: Priester Mowing Down AA, 1st Rounder Injuries

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Nick Gonzales, Pirates prospects

After a week off from action, which aligned with the Major League All-Star break, minor league baseball will return Friday. The Bucs affiliates will begin the second half of their season as the Pirates prospects continue in their development.

As is the case in a rebuild, a lot of the current excitement surrounding the organization comes from the Pirates’ prospects. Pittsburgh is considered to have one of the stronger farm systems in the league, and there are multiple storylines to watch out for as games resume.

Injury Progression For Top Prospects

Two of the Pirates’ top prospects, two former first-round picks in fact, are currently on the shelf. 2020 first-rounder Nick Gonzales is battling plantar fasciitis, and 2021 first-overall pick Henry Davis is working his way back from a wrist injury that he has been dealing with for much of the season.

Both prospects offer hope to the future lineup at the big league level one day, and the Bucs need both players to return to action in Double-A Altoona once fully healed. Once back in action, it will be interesting to see how they play the rest of the season and if they can stay healthy.

New Kids On The Block

The Pirates concluded their 2022 draft on Wednesday as the organization will look to sign all their picks and add 21 new faces to the organization. The headliner, of course, is Termarr Johnson, who the Pirates selected fourth overall. HIs strong hit-tool and power potential make him an exciting Pirates prospect to follow.

Once signed, the Pirates have to decide which affiliate to which each of the prospects will report beginning their professional careers.

Pitching Development

Looking at the system as a whole, Pittsburgh’s farm system looks to be stronger on the position player side of things as opposed to on the mound. With that being said, there are a number of pitching prospects to follow in the second half.

2019 first-rounder Quinn Priester has looked strong through his first five starts with Altoona as his ERA currently sits at 2.11. He rang up 18 strikeouts in his last four starts.

Mike Burrows earned a promotion to Triple-A Indianapolis, and while he hasn’t quite yet found much success, he is considered to be one of the Pirates’ top arms in the system.

A few of the other Pirates prospects to watch for on the mound include Jared Jones, Anthony Solometo, and Bubba Chandler, as the latter continues to develop as a two-way player.

More Young Bucs In Pittsburgh

Throughout the season, the Pirates have seen Major League debuts and contributions from a number of top prospects and other young players. As the season goes on, the Pirates will continue to give playing time to their younger players, especially after it is expected a handful of veterans will be moved by the trade deadline.

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