Saturday, April 21, 2012

Pittsburgh Pirates Top Prospects 6-10

The Pirates prospect series continues with 6-10.
Please keep in mind that most of this was written before the season and contains a small amount of editing on the Stetson Allie description.

6) Luis Heredia LHP
Heredia has yet to make his debut beyond the Gulf Coast league,but the 17 year old Mexican might be the most anticipated player from the International free agent pool that the Pirates have ever signed.
Heredia has already been clocked in the mid-90's and has room to grow.
The 6-6 Heredia has an advanced changeup and an improving curveball that has brought comparisons to Felix Hernandez.
If Heredia is able to come close to that mark,the Pirates will have themselves quite a prospect.
The Pirates may make the move to start Heredia at State College this season,although I would not be surprised to see the team keep him in Florida and go full tilt at West Virginia next season....

7) Stetson Allie RHP
The Ohio native has been described as having the best stuff in the system by Pirate prospect guru Wilbur Miller with a fastball clocked at 100 mph and a hard slider that can buckle knees.
What's not to like?Well,his control has tons of room to grow and another pitch to add to his toolbox could go a long way in being less dependent on the fastball.
Allie is a risk/reward pitcher and could be a dominant starter or reliever,he also could be the latest hard throwing hurler that is simply unable to harness any type of control,bounces from team to team as most teams would be willing to take the chance on that type of gun..

Editors Note: I saw Allie's season debut against the Hagerstown Suns and frankly,I have never seen a meltdown like that from a touted prospect in person.
As described here,the performance might be the most memorable one third of an inning that I have spent at the Muni.
Allie returned to action tonight from the bullpen,lasting another third of inning,walking four batters in allowing two runs in another crazy outing.
At this rate,Allie will be lucky to make next years top fifty prospects....

8) Tony Sanchez C
The former first rounder returns to AA Altoona after a season that saw him injured,suspended for criticizing umpires via Twitter and a less than stellar season at the plate.
The Pirates do not expect Sanchez to hit for power,but they would like to see him hit for average and use his plus defensive skills.
Sanchez throws well,but still could use some refinements against the running game.
A quick start with the Curve could see Sanchez hit AAA Indianapolis and with a solid start there,Sanchez could move him to Pittsburgh as soon as next season.
That might be the best case scenario as the questions still are there on Sanchez being able to be an everyday starter or a solid backup....

9) Colton Cain LHP
Cain moves up to Bradenton after finishing 2011 as the best of the prospect laden West Virginia rotation.
The burly lefty throws in the low 90's and has an above average changeup that played very well in the SAL.Cain is working on a curveball that would give him three solid pitches,but needs to show that he will not wear down under a full season workload as he dealt with a 2010 back injury at State College and wore down last season in the second half.
Cain could be a solid lefty in the rotation down the road,if things move as projected...

10) Kyle McPherson RHP
McPherson took the largest leap last season as he moved from one notch above organizational soldier to solid prospect with a terrific season at both High A Bradenton and AA Altoona.
McPherson has extremely good control and uses a standard three pitch mix and posted solid numbers at both stops last season.
McPherson throws in the low to occasional mid 90's and could be a contender for the 2013 rotation with a strong season with the I-Tribe..

Editors Note:McPherson has yet to make his 2012 debut as he has been placed on the disabled list with shoulder issues....

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