On Tuesday night, Willy Garcia collected his fourth triple of the season. While he is hitting just .220 with 45 strikeouts in 132 at-bats, Garcia has seven doubles, four triples and five homers, so he is getting his share of extra-base hits. This triple was the lone Altoona highlight on offense in their 1-0 loss to Akron. Adrian Sampson took the tough loss, but pitched great, allowing one run over seven innings, with a career-high eight strikeouts. Prior to this start, we posted an article on Sampson and how he is searching for consistency this season. He seemed to find it yesterday, as his strong season continues.
The only other highlight is from Monday’s Indianapolis game, when Chris McGuiness launched his third home run of the season. McGuiness has had a relatively quiet season, although he was doing much better in April than he is in May. He has 11 doubles and 22 walks, both good numbers, but his .234 average and three homers from a first baseman are obviously not up to par. He has six hits and two walks in his last four games, so it’s possible he is starting to put things together.
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball.
When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.