Prospect Watch: Strong Performances from JT Brubaker, Taylor Hearn and Gavin Wallace

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 or loses his prospect eligibility (Colin Moran, Edgar Santana, Kyle Crick, Max Moroff and Dovydas Neverauskas), 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 our 2018 Prospect Guide, and links on each name go to their Pirates Prospects player pages.

1. Mitch Keller, RHP, Altoona – DNP

2. Austin Meadows, CF, Pirates – In Majors

3. Cole Tucker, SS, Altoona – 1-for-4

4. Shane Baz, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP

5. Ke’Bryan Hayes, 3B, Altoona – DNP

6. Kevin Newman, SS, Indianapolis – 1-for-5, 2B

7. Taylor Hearn, LHP, Altoona –  7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 9 SO

8. Lolo Sanchez, CF, West Virginia – DNP

9. Bryan Reynolds, OF, Altoona

10. Jordan Luplow, LF, Indianapolis – 3-for-5, 2B

11. Luis Escobar, RHP, Bradenton – DNP

12. Clay Holmes, RHP, Indianapolis – DNP

13. Braeden Ogle, LHP, West Virginia – DNP

14. Nick Kingham, RHP, Pirates – In Majors

15. Kevin Kramer, 2B, Indianapolis – 1-for-4, SB

16. Adrian Valerio, SS, Bradenton – 0-for-4

17. Calvin Mitchell, OF, West Virginia – 1-for-3, BB

18. Oneil Cruz, SS, West Virginia – 2-for-4, BB, RBI

19. Nick Burdi, RHP, Pirates (disabled list) – DNP

20. Dario Agrazal, RHP, Altoona – DNP

21. JT Brubaker, RHP, Indianapolis – 6 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 4 SO

22. Will Craig, 1B, Altoona – 0-for-4

23. Stephen Alemais, 2B/SS, Altoona

24. Jason Martin, OF, Altoona – 2-for-4

25. Brandon Waddell, LHP, Indianapolis – DNP

26. Eduardo Vera, RHP, Altoona –  DNP

27. Mason Martin, 1B, West Virginia – 1-for-3, BB

28. Conner Uselton, OF, Extended Spring Training – DNP

29. Cody Bolton, RHP, West Virginia – DNP

30. Steven Jennings, RHP, Extended Spring Training – DNP


Indianapolis won 8-0 over Rochester.

JT Brubaker has had some control troubles in Triple-A that we weren’t seeing when he was with Altoona. He was able to work around those control issues on Thursday afternoon to put together a great outing. Brubaker threw six shout innings on five hits and four walks, lowering his ERA to 3.09  through six starts and 32 innings with Indianapolis.  Jesus Liranzo allowed a hit and two walks, while also throwing a wild pitch, but he tossed two shutout innings and struck out four batters.

On offense, Christopher Bostick had three hits, including his fourth home run of the season. He also scored twice and drew a walk. He’s batting .326 this season. Max Moroff hit a two-run homer and walked. Jordan Luplow had three hits including his 16th double. Kevin Newman hit his 13th double. Wyatt Mathisen had a single, double and two RBIs. Kevin Kramer stole his fifth base.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


Altoona won 1-0 over Reading.

Taylor Hearn came into Thursday night with six earned runs allowed over his last five starts combined. He made that six runs over six starts with his best game of the year. Hearn went seven shutout innings on four hits, two walks and nine strikeouts. He threw 106 pitches, with 69 going for strikes. After getting his season ERA up to 5.81 in early May, he’s now down to 3.63 through 57 innings, with 61 strikeouts. Sean Keselica pitched out an a jam from Yeudy Garcia in the eighth, then tossed a scoreless ninth for the win. He hasn’t allowed a run in his last 11 innings, spanning eight appearances.

The offense was very quiet in this game until the ninth, picking up five hits (all singles), three walks and one hit batter. Jason Martin was the only batter to reach base twice, collecting two singles. Tyler Gaffney made his first hit count, singling home Stephen Alemais in the bottom of the ninth for the walk-off win.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


Bradenton lost 4-3 on Thursday night to Florida.

Starter James Marvel has struggled in each of his last two starts. He wasn’t bad on this night, going seven innings with four runs (three earned) on six hits and no walks, with three strikeouts. Marvel needed just 75 pitches, with 56 going for strikes. He also posted an 11:4 GO/AO ratio. Scooter Hightower was out next and he

Lucas Tancas got Bradenton on the board first with a two-run homer in the third inning, his second of the season. In the ninth down two runs, Mitchell Tolman doubled, then scored on an Alfredo Reyes single, but that was the end of the rally. Reyes had two hits. Jason Delay had two walks and a hit. He’s now batting .299 after a slow start.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


West Virginia won 5-1 over Lexington.

Gavin Wallace, who has pitched just three innings in the last two weeks due to rain outs and an ill-timed rain delay, got the start tonight. Wallace dominated on this night except for one pitch that was hit for a solo homer. In eight innings, he allowed one run on five hits, with no walks and a season high seven strikeouts. He had a 12:4 GO/AO ratio and threw 74 of 99 pitches for strikes. Matt Seelinger sealed the win with a scoreless ninth.

On offense, the Power got a double and two RBIs from Ben Bengtson. Oneil Cruz and Deon Stafford each had two hits and drove in a run. Stafford hit his 11th double while Cruz added a walk. Cruz is now hitting .295 on the season after hitting.238 just four weeks ago. Calvin Mitchell had a single, walk and scored two runs. Mason Martin had a single and a walk.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview here.


The DSL Pirates1 won 9-3 on Thursday.

Starter Yandy Vega pitched 4.2 innings, allowing three runs on five hits and three walks, with three strikeouts. Luis Nova relieved him and tossed 3.1 shutout frames, striking out five batters. Lizardy Dicent pitched the ninth.

The offense had 11 hits and 11 walks, with every starter reaching base at least once. Catcher Jommer Hernandez, who was one of the biggest July 2nd signings, had three hits, drove in a pair and scored twice. He hit his first triple. Daniel Rivero had two hits, a walk and an RBI. Joseivin Medina had a single, double and an RBI. He also stole his first base. Carlos Arroyo hit his first pro home run and drew two walks.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

The DSL Pirates2 lost 10-4 to drop to 0-5 on the season.

Angel Basabe, who signed for $450,000 in July, had two hits in his debut yesterday and today he had a triple and a walk. Darwin Baez had two hits, including his first double. Stiwatt Valerio had a hit and a walk in his only two plate appearances. Ivan Rosario, who really struggled as a rookie last year, went 1-for-2 with an RBI and a walk to give him a .333 average.

Starter Mario Garcia allowed three runs on seven hits in four innings, with no walks and five strikeouts. Reliever Eddison Polonia allowed five runs in two innings and outfielder Fleury Nova had to finish out the game on the mound, retiring both batters he faced.

Here is the boxscore from the MiLB site.

You can view the season preview for both teams here.

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.

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