Pirates Prospect Daily: After a Strong Spring, What’s Next for Carmen Mlodzinski?

Carmen Mlodzinski allowed the first two runs of the spring, recording just a single out before getting removed from the game for Cam Alldred. It’s been a great spring for Mlodzinski, who has really been aggressive with hitters. 

He picked up four whiffs on seven swings with his fastball alone of Saturday. How the Pirates utilize him will be interesting, as with so many upper level starting pitcher options available, the quickest way for him to make an impact would be as a reliever.

Mlodzinski came out of the bullpen in the middle of an inning, something you usually see out of a reliever during spring. The longer they keep him around Major League camp, the more likely it seems a move to the bullpen could be possible.

A move to the bullpen may be the long-term best move, but Mlodzinski certainly has value as a starter right now, even if it’s bringing some added depth to the potential Indianapolis rotation. 

There is a possible added bonus with it. Usually the thought is that when the Pirates go to make room for a prospect, they trade from the Major League roster. If Mlodzinski continues to show potential as a starter, instead of moving him to the bullpen, they can capitalize on his value and trade him for another area of need.

Pitching is still gold in baseball, and a team that is further down in the building process than the Pirates, may value a player like Mlodzinski enough to be a part of a trade involving a more veteran type player.

After a strong finish to last season, things finally look to be heading in the right direction for Mlodzinski. Regardless, he looks to be taking the next step forward in his development, and it seems to be at the right time.

Pirates Prospects Daily

By John Dreker

Pirates lost 8-0 on the road yesterday, with a lineup that looked a lot like their Opening Day lineup, along with Vince Velasquez on the mound. Here’s the boxscore if you’re not squeamish. Focus on the Roansy Contreras part, that should help.

Pirates take on the Red Sox this afternoon on the road. The lineup will be posted below once it becomes available.

**Pirates Option Cal Mitchell; Nick Gonzales Gets Reassigned to Minor League Camp Pirates still have 22 more cuts before Opening Day, which is ten days from today.

**World Baseball Classic Recap: USA Defeats Venezuela USA won last night over Cuba in a blowout. Japan vs Mexico tonight, then USA plays the winner of that game in the finals on Tuesday.

**Pirates Prospects Daily: Cutter Puts In Work For Mitch Keller In Latest Start

**Pirates DVR: Travis Swaggerty Home Run, Austin Hedges Defense, Oneil Cruz Throw

Song of the Day

Today’s Lineup

Pirates at Boston Red Sox, afternoon tilt. Road game, but it’s televised

Anthony began writing over 10 years ago, starting a personal blog to cover the 2011 MLB draft, where the Pirates selected first overall. After bouncing around many websites covering hockey, he refocused his attention to baseball, his first love when it comes to sports. He eventually found himself here at Pirates Prospects in late 2021, where he covers the team’s four full season minor league affiliates.

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Haven’t seen Cutch in the lineup since 3/12, over a week. Anyone know if something is going on there? Was he injured?


Think he was hit on the wrist maybe. Supposedly precautionary.


Geesh…..why is Underwood pitching a second inning? He’s been pitching all winter, all spring, WBC, etc……??


Well, he does pitch Middle relief and 1+ to 2 ip in games. He had 3ip in winter 3 Ip in WBC and after today 3.1 IP in ST. Doesn’t seem too much work. Maybe he was asking to pitch?


His history is a decent 1 IP reliever. He gets hit hard way too often in inning two. Shelton needs to look at the analytics. We all can see it.


Shelton needs to get in mid season form too!


Crosby Stills n’ Jigba keeps smacking the ball around. I don’t see the defensive fit for the opening day roster but it sure is nice to see two of our OF prospects busting it out to make this squad.


Three oppo field hits today by CSN. He’s seeing it well and getting his timing down, going with the pitch.


That’s just CSN.


I hope it is and not his usual tendency to hit the ball on the ground and the other way!




And hard barrell off the wall…..trip, trip, triple. He was pitched tough on those 2 K’s, borderline strike 3’s looking.


I don’t know why we are so down on Bae, we need that speed on the basepaths. The guy has hit well at every level and I believe he is just pressing because he wants that 2nrld base spot. I don’t trust Rodolfo. And while power is good, we have enough in this line up without him. I truly believe Bae will hit 40 to 50 points higher than Rodolfo and get on base alot more often and swipe double the bags of Rodolfo.


I can deliver this unhappy message 2 different ways

Bae has zero shot, nothing to do with spring struggles


Even though he leads all of ST in 5 offensive categories
Bae has a zero shot

Doesn’t anyone watch minor league baseball games at all?
Indy? Altoona.?

I’ve seen J-Bae play over 100 games and anyone did they would know



New drinking game, a drink every time Bae and Andujar check their swings!


Seems that Ortiz is using his change in this game, no swing, no chase no strike so far.


Looks like a Bench Battle Brawl lineup. I don’t see how they don’t break camp w Swaggs in CF. Reynolds has barely played there and Bae has hit his way out of contention. Suwinski and Joe make a logical platoon w Cutch a full time DH. Who has outplayed Castro for 2B in camp + his decent performance last year = starting 2B. Last battle seems to be Mathias vs Owings and I go Mathias


Bae’s spring hitting will not be how they choose the lineup. Come on now. We all know this but we keep acting like these spring games are the end all be all. They are not.


If these were the Yankees, but this is a team with a bunch of rookies and 2nd year players that haven’t claimed any spot, how else are they deciding. They don’t have enough history on any of them to say that they are not competing. Now if you say results, that I buy, if a guy is .350 but barely getting the ball out of the infield v a guy batting .200 while driving the ball and making enough contact that’s different. Castro could’ve been the favorite in January, but if Bae or Tucu were performing I’m sure that they would had pulled ahead.


Agreed but that is why I do not think there is a competition for Castros job. Bae makes more sense for utility since he can man centerfield but I hate to see him rot at the end of the bench.

Last edited 2 months ago by Born4rf

Every time I hear this song all I can see in my head is Jake and Ellwood ordering up 4 fried chickens and a Coke plus dry white toast when they are in Aretha’s soul food joint getting Matt “Guitar” Murphy and “Blue” Lou Marini to come back to the band. Too bad John had is issues and the band never made any more albums. Great band with a great sound.


His last outing wasn’t good, which shows how one outing can inflate an ERA. Let him go to Indy and become consistent down there. If he can, great. If not, he becomes a reliever.


Fully agree. Let’s see what he does over 5 – 6 inning stints (if they dare let a starter pitch that long). A decent starter trumps a reliever any day in my book so let’s not give up on that yet. In some ways I am disappointed they are not already stretching him out or maybe that says an awful lot about their intentions.


Maybe they are considering him for the Bucs pen this season sooner than later.


We’re overthinking this CSN vs Swaggerty thing. Swaggy is 25. We already control his 30 year old season. Give him the nod. Play as much as possible without ticking off Cutch.


Your last statement is why the Cutch signing was such a horrible idea. His situation is a train wreck waiting to happen.


Plus TSwag can actually play defense.


Any pitcher who has pitched on this team the past few years is sayin “yes” to more defense!


Bench battles……………..original…..now
10) Connor Joe………………90%……80%
11) Travis Swaggerty……….30%……70%
12) Tyler Heineman…………60%……60%
13) Chris Owings……………50%……60%
14) Ji-Hwan Bae…………….60%……40%
15) Kevin Plawecki…………40%……40%
16) Canaan Smith-Njigba…30%……30%
17) Tucupita Marcano……..30%……20%
18) Mark Mathias……………n/a……..10%
19) Miguel Andujar………….10%……10%
20) Drew Maggi……………….5%……..5%
The big question remains…will they carry 5 OFs or 2 UTs. I still have Suwinski and Castro as locks, though I’m starting to wonder. I still think Joe makes it, so Smith-Njigba can get regular ABs in AAA. Swaggerty has forced his way onto the roster. Feels like Owings has moved ahead of Bae–veteranosity and all. Hasn’t even been a hint of who might be ahead in the backup C battle. Everyone from Marcano down would need an injury to make it.


They traded Nick Garcia for Connor Joe’s 2 OPTIONS,
LITERALLY for this type of scenerio where
Castro, Marcano, Mathias each keep their last option
which ups their trade value,
Hopefully someone comes knocking for Castro
Marcano is one of BC’s own
Bae = service time

See ya Conner


On what basis do you say mowings is ahead of bae? Spring stats? They have to make a 40 man move for Owings to make the team. Mathias is already on the 40 man. He is more likely to knock bae down than owings.


Have there been any more statements regarding Cutch basically being a DH. That quote from him has now aged a bit, but how he is used I think heavily impacts the 4 vs 5 OF. If he really is a DH who occasionally plays outfield then I think it becomes clear they need 5 OF (with him as #5 ). The alternative is the dreaded shagging of flies by one of the UT guys.


It’s not like Castro has done anything to win the job. If they’re somewhat even offensively, I am giving Bae the nod for his defense. We will have to
PREVENT runs to win games.


Don’t think Spring Training numbers will make a difference. Castro lacks Bae’s speed, but he’s more athletic, has a stronger arm and has more power potential. Will be interesting to see how it all plays out.


If you want the best defense at 2b, then Owings is your man.
Taking cover!

Last edited 2 months ago by PirateRican21

I be Owings you a beat down after that remark!!



That is WIERD!! 🙀🙀🙀


It’s not like they can’t send a guy down in two weeks when they only got 8 ABs.


Making out the initial 2 is fun, but you are right. The last 10-15 players will chamge a lot over the course of a season.


‘26’ not ‘2’.

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