Earlier this morning, Wilbur Miller took a closer look at the Pittsburgh Pirates farm system. This is the season for farm system rankings and top prospect lists and there have been a lot of them recently. We have two more from this morning (plus there will be more later today), one from Keith Law looking at the top ten prospects in the system, and another from MiLB, ranking the top farm systems.
Law posted his top ten list for the Pirates, following up a top 100 list that had five Pirates listed. So we already knew before today that he had Ke’Bryan Hayes, Mitch Keller, Oneil Cruz, Travis Swaggerty and Quinn Priester as his top five prospects for the Pirates in that order. The bottom five in order are: Liover Peguero, Calvin Mitchell, Sammy Siani, Brennan Malone and Kevin Kramer.
Ji-Hwan Bae, Will Craig, Tahnaj Thomas, Braxton Ashcraft, Santiago Florez, Jase Bowen, Steven Jennings, Mason Martin, Lolo Sanchez and international signing Cristopher Cruz round out the top 20. All of the 11-20 have brief write-ups explaining how they got in the top 20.
MiLB has the Pirates ranked as the 14th best farm system. This is actually part three of their farm system rankings. They began by ranking all of the teams based on their position players. The Pirates were 14th overall in that category. That was followed by ranking all of the pitching prospects. The Pirates rated 13th in that category. As far as the NL Central goes in these rankings, the Pirates do well. The Cubs, Reds and Brewers are all among the last nine teams, with the Reds 28th overall and Brewers ranking dead last. Only the Cardinals are better than the Pirates, and they rank just two spots ahead. The Cardinals actually rank 18th in pitching and 13th in hitting, so you could make a case (based on MiLB’s own rankings) that the Pirates should be ahead of them.