I think the biggest complaint that can be levied against the Pittsburgh Pirates right now is how long their rebuild is taking.
The Pirates are heading in the right direction from a farm system standpoint. In fact, if you look at some of their needs, and line those needs up with system strengths, you see more of a fully shaped plan.
For example, the Pirates need catching. Ben Cherington made that a priority in 2021. He added Endy Rodriguez in the Joe Musgrove trade. Then, he drafted Henry Davis first overall that summer. That was followed by smaller trades for Carter Bins and Abrahan Gutierrez. They even let Blake Sabol move behind the plate, which has paid off for some extra depth.
One of those catching prospects is bound to work out, and it’s impressive how much depth at one position Cherington has acquired. Every hopeful contender needs catching, and the Pirates have gone from nothing to extremely strong depth at the position.
As we kind of pointed out in last week’s Roundtable, there are a lot of needs on this team. Alex Stumpf of DK Pittsburgh Sports spoke with Ben Cherington yesterday, who acknowledged the need for a first baseman and rotation help.
Not all of the help will come from the farm system. But the Pirates do have options at each position. The 2023 season should mark the debuts of Quinn Priester and Mike Burrows to the rotation. As for first base, the Pirates have upper level options that include Mason Martin, Malcom Nunez, Aaron Shackelford, Matt Gorski, and other players who might not be playing first base as their primary position.
There are options within the system for the Pirates’ needs. The 2023 season should see the farm fill some of those needs. With the right additions from the outside, the Pirates could be an entertaining team to watch next year.
Highlight of the Day
— Anthony Murphy (@__Murphy88) November 9, 2022
Song of the Day
- Pirates Claim Outfielder Ryan Vilade from Rockies
- Endy Rodriguez Named South Atlantic League MVP
- Pirates Announce Their Teammates and Coach of the Year
- WTM: Possible Rotations for Greensboro and Bradenton in 2023
- P2Daily: Aaron Shackelford Led The Pirates System In Home Runs In 2022
Pirates Prospects Spotlight
Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.