Prospect Watch: Oddy Nunez Builds Off Recent Success

P2 Top 30

A look at how the current top 30 prospects did today. If a player is in the majors for an extended time (Jose Osuna), or loses his prospect eligibility, he will be removed from this list. Everyone below him will be shifted up a spot, and a new player will be added to the bottom of the list. If a player is out for the season, he will be removed and everyone below him will move up a spot. Removing these guys doesn’t mean they have lost prospect status. It is just an attempt to get more active prospects on the list. Rankings are from the 2017 Prospect Guide, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

1. Austin Meadows, CF, Indianapolis -[insert_php] include_once (‘./p2-stats/stats_functions.php’);
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2. Mitch Keller, RHP, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(656605,’P’,’20170612′);
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3. Kevin Newman, SS, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(621028,’B’,’20170612′);
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4. Cole Tucker, SS, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(657061,’B’,’20170612′);
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5. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Bradenton -[insert_php] display_top30(663647,’B’,’20170612′);
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6. Will Craig, 3B, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(643269,’B’,’20170612′);
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7. Taylor Hearn, LHP, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(621368,’P’,’20170612′);
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8. Gage Hinsz, RHP, Bradenton – [insert_php] display_top30(656543,’P’,’20170612′);
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9. Nick Kingham, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(592468,’P’,’20170612′);
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10. Steven Brault, LHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(643230,’P’,’20170612′);
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11. Clay Holmes, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(605280,’P’,’20170612′);
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12. Braeden Ogle, LHP, Extended Spring Training – [insert_php] display_top30(669180,’P’,’20170416′);
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13. Max Kranick, RHP, Extended Spring Training – [insert_php] display_top30(668820,’P’,’20170416′);
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14. Elias Diaz, C, Pirates – [insert_php] display_top30(553869,’B’,’20170612′);
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15. Edgar Santana, RHP, Pirates – [insert_php] display_top30(650828,’P’,’20170612′);
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16. Luis Escobar, RHP, West Virginia – [insert_php] display_top30(650813,’P’,’20170612′);
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17. Dovydas Neverauskas, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(596720,’P’,’20170612′);
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18. Yeudy Garcia, RHP, Altoona -[insert_php] display_top30(650817,’P’,’20170612′);
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19. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Altoona -[insert_php] display_top30(596012,’B’,’20170612′);
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20. Tyler Eppler, RHP, Indianapolis -[insert_php] display_top30(621169,’P’,’20170612′);
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21. Stephen Alemais, SS, West Virginia – [insert_php] display_top30(641301,’B’,’20170612′);
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22. Brandon Waddell, LHP, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(663399,’P’,’20170612′);
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23. Travis MacGregor, RHP, Extended Spring Training – [insert_php] display_top30(669740,’P’,’20170416′);
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24. Barrett Barnes, LF, Indianapolis -[insert_php] display_top30(608627,’B’,’20170612′);
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25. Max Moroff, 2B, Pirates -[insert_php] display_top30(621559,’B’,’20170612′);
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26. Eric Wood, 3B, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(607780,’B’,’20170612′);
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27. J.T. Brubaker, RHP, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(664141,’P’,’20170612′);
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28. Chris Bostick, INF/OF, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(607471,’B’,’20170612′);
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29. Connor Joe, 3B, Altoona – [insert_php] display_top30(656582,’B’,’20170612′);
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30. Pat Light, RHP, Indianapolis – [insert_php] display_top30(572990,’P’,’20170612′);
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P2 Top Performers

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Prospect-Watch-Indy

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Indianapolis has off on Monday.

Prospect-Watch-Altoona-Curve

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Altoona has off on Monday.

Prospect-Watch-Bradenton

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Bradenton lost 2-1 in 11 innings on Monday, putting a dent in their hopes on winning the first half pennant. What makes things worse is that the winning run scored due to a wild pitch and a passed ball. Five pitchers combined to allow one earned run on five hits and five walks in 11 innings. Daniel Zamora lowered his ERA to 0.70 and Seth McGarry now has a 1.07 mark after each threw two shutout innings. Zamora struck out four batters.

The Marauders had just six hits of their own and a Casey Hughston double was the only extra-base hit. He went 3-for-3 in stolen bases off of former Pirate catcher Francisco Diaz. Hughston also reached on a single and a walk. Will Craig continued his recent on base surge with a single and a walk. His .390 on base percentage ranks sixth in the league and it’s one point ahead of catcher Christian Kelley for the team lead. Craig is now up to 14th in the FSL in OPS. Ke’Bryan Hayes stole his 19th base in just 22 attempts.

Prospect-Watch-WV-Power

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CHARLESTON – As Oddy Nunez works into a starting role, he needs to clear certain hurdles (pitch counts and innings limits chief among them), and so far in 2017, he has leaped those obstructions with ease. For the first time in his career, Nunez tossed more than 70 pitches. He left the game at the end of five innings exhibiting some of the best stuff he’s had all year.

Nunez had his sinker working early. He started four of his five innings with a swinging strikeout and added a pair more as the second out in the third and fifth inning. The six strikeouts tie Nunez’s career high for the fourth time in his last nine starts.

Nunez is not, however, a power pitcher. His devastating sinker produces one of the best groundball rates on the team, and tonight he lived up to his reputation with eight groundouts against one fly out (a foul pop to end the fourth inning).

Nunez allowed only one run. In the fourth inning, Nunez pegged the lead-off batter after opening with two strikes. It looked like the ball came off his hand wrong and plunked the Greensboro right fielder in the back of the helmet. The runner advanced to third on successive groundouts, and Nunez’s second allowed hit of the game drove the run home.

The Power did little to help Nunez, collecting a mere two hits (both by catcher Brent Gibbs) when he was on the mound. Gibbs doubled home Hunter Owen, who reached on a walk, in the second inning to take the early lead. With the walk, Owen extended his on-base streak to twelve games. Albert Baur, on the other hand, saw his 31-game on-base streak end.

While it would have been nice to see Baur reach in every game he played in the first half, Power manager Wyatt Toregas took some positives from Baur’s plate appearance tonight. “He hit the ball really deep out there [on a deep fly out to center in the fourth],” said Toregas. “He just picked the wrong part of the park to hit it to.”

Dylan Prohoroff took over for Nunez in the sixth inning and faced the top of the Grasshopper lineup. Prohoroff was scheduled to pitch out of the bullpen yesterday, but the 12-1 blowout loss pushed Toregas to preserve Prohoroff for a meaningful appearance. Outfielder Alexis Bastardo pitched in his stead.

Tonight, Prohoroff showed his best and his worst. He found a lot of holes in the Greensboro bats, but he lacked control. Of his 45 pitches, 18 were balls (which missed by a wide margin). He struck out the first batter he faced in the sixth and then hit the following batter – indicative of his up-and-down evening. The hit batter scored on a double by Grasshopper third baseman James Nelson. Nelson came around to score on a single later in the inning.

Prohoroff settled down in his final two innings. He ended the night with three strikeouts, a walk, and the HBP.

The Power climbed back into the game without displaying much liveliness at the plate. Bastardo led off the sixth with a walk and moved to second when the Greensboro pitcher threw a pick-off attempt wide of the bag. Carlos Munoz brought him home with a two-out single.

Brent Gibbs reached base for the third time by getting hit with a pitch in the seventh. An easy two-out grounder by Clark Eagan slipped by the first baseman to allow Gibbs to reach third. The Grasshopper catcher recovered the ball and sailed it into outfield in an attempt to get Eagan out at second. Gibbs came in to score on the second error to tie the game at three runs apiece.

Matt Frawley pitched a perfect ninth inning, needing only six pitches to retire the side. Frawley didn’t have the same success in the tenth inning, allowing a lead-off double on his sixth pitch of the inning, but Frawley made heads up play on a sacrifice bunt to get the runner at third. Gibbs supplemented his offensive success by nailing a would-be base stealer at second, and Frawley worked a fastball up and in for the inning-ending strikeout.

Frawley, who usually functions as the team’s closer and has finished 10 of the 18 games in which he appeared, now boasts a 0.75 WHIP.

The Power had the opportunity to win in the ninth when Gibbs and Kevin Mahala hit back-to-back one-out singles, but Eagan and Bastardo quickly went down to end the threat.

Mike Wallace took the mound in the top of the eleventh and retired the first two batters on four pitches. Unfortunately, he completely fell apart at that point, allowing two walks, a single, and a two-run double before getting a liner to right to end the inning. Wallace seemed to be over-throwing his fastball, with the ball skipping in the dirt on numerous occasions.

The Power were not able to battle back in the bottom of the eleventh. Hunter Owen, Trae Arbet, and Gibbs went down swinging to end the last first-half home game with a loss.

The Power have some offensive help on the way, though. Toregas said that Adrian Valerio and Victor Fernandez should join the team for their final road trip of the first half. Valerio and Fernandez came into the season with substantial buzz but have been on the DL since June 2 and April 10, respectively. – Abigail Miskowiec

Prospect-Watch-DSL

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The DSL Pirates moved to 4-4 on the season after a 4-0 loss to the Rangers1. The Pirates had just one base runner the entire game, and that was a single by Emison Soto with two outs in the eighth inning. That line does come with the caveat that they were facing a 20-year-old in his fourth season in the DSL for the first six innings. He has put up strong numbers in each of the last two seasons, so that’s not your typical DSL pitcher.

The Pirates sent hard-throwing Osvaldo Bido to the mound for his second start and he lasted 3.1 innings, giving up three runs (two earned) on four hits and two walks. He allowed four runs over three innings in his debut this season, but all of those runs were unearned. Luis Arrieta, who was one of the top pitchers signed last July, gave up one run on two hits and a walk over 2.2 innings. He allowed one run over three innings in his only other appearance.

Top prospect Jean Eusebio had his first tough day, going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and two throwing errors, though he did pick up an outfield assist.

  • Maybe I haven’t been paying much attention but how come a 6 foot 5 inch lefty with swing a miss stuff not get reported more? Like I said, I more than likely don’t read enough.

  • Talk about breakouts what about Oddy and Dario?

    • Abigail Miskowiec
      June 12, 2017 8:56 pm

      Nunez looked really good tonight, but he has a long way to go. His command of his three pitches rivals anyone else on the Power roster, but they’re taking their time with building his endurance and his ability to go deep into games. He just crossed the 70 pitch threshold for the first time tonight. That said, I really like watching him pitch because of his funky delivery and his dramatic sinker.

      • Great update, and I appreciated the info on Adrian Valerio. Nunez is extremely efficient with his pitches. He has now thrown 5 innings in the last 3 games and thrown only 56, 62, and 72 pitches in those games. Only 1 Walk and 10 K’s in those games, and a combined GO/FO of 27/3. Amazing numbers for a kid who will pitch the whole year as a 20 year old.

        With Nunez, Vera, Escobar, Marvel, Vieaux and others, this could be the deepest, high quality Rotation in the Pirate System.

        • Abigail Miskowiec
          June 13, 2017 10:10 am

          It’s hard to put any rotation above Bradenton. Escobar has very spotty control at times, although he probably has the best raw stuff. Vera has been impressive in his spot starts, but he’s primarily been coming out of the bullpen. That said, when callups start happening, he could very well slide into a rotation role. WV is raw and has a lot of work to do, but I think the fact that most of the pitchers have added velocity and are showing consistent growth is very encouraging.

          • I remember the beginning of the year when we were all feeling sorry for you – the team has truly come around – the Coaching staff must be working very hard.

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