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  1. 1. Oneil Cruz | SS
    Oneil Cruz
    Born: Oct 4, 1998
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'7" Wt.: 210
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2015.
    Signed By: Patrick Guerrero/Franklin Taveras/Bob Engle (Dodgers).

    Hitting: 50. Power: 70. Running: 60. Fielding: 55. Arm: 60.

    TRACK RECORD: Cruz signed with the Dodgers for $950,000 in 2015 and was traded to the Pirates two years later for Tony Watson. He cemented his status as the most athletic and dynamic prospect in the Pirates' system during his ascent to Double-A in 2019 and spent the 2020 season at the alternate training site. In September, he was involved in a car crash that killed three people.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Although it might seem odd to see a 6-foot-7 player at shortstop, Cruz can handle the position. He has plus speed and moves around well at short despite his height. Cruz has a plus arm and the Pirates have better infield options, so he may end up in right field in the future. Cruz is a dynamic prospect due to his elite raw power that comes from his long arms and strength in his hands and wrists. He's hit for average in the minors, but because of his lanky body and long levers, there are long-term concerns about whether pitchers will find holes in his strike zone to exploit.

    THE FUTURE: Cruz has the tools to anchor the middle of the Pirates' lineup with power and speed.

  2. 2. Henry Davis | C
    Henry Davis
    Born: Sep 21, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 210

    Davis ranked as the No. 306 prospect in the 2018 class out of Fox Lane High in Bedford, N.Y., but at the time he was seen as a defensive-first catcher with work to do offensively. His loudest tool was by far his arm, with some scouts grading it as a 70 at the time and comparing it to the best throwing arms in the majors while he was still in high school. That remains the case for Davis, whose arm strength is elite and at least a 70-grade tool now, but his offensive development and performance this spring have pushed him up draft boards to the point where most teams consider him the best college bat in the 2021 class. A 6-foot-2, 210-pound backstop, Davis entered Louisville with a swing that was described as too steep, lengthy and stiff. He's improved that significantly over three seasons, though his swing is still a bit unorthodox. Davis sets up with a crouched and open stance, with his hands at shoulder length before cocking back in his load and striding to an even or closed setup with his feet. It's a strength-based swing more than a twitchy, fluid, bat speed operation, but Davis combines standout zone recognition, pure bat-to-ball skills and plus power to his pull side to make everything work. Davis has walked more than he's struck out in his Louisville career, with 31 walks to 23 strikeouts through 49 games in 2021 and was flirting with .400 for a decent stretch of the season while also tapping into a career-high 14 homers. Most of that power goes to the pull side, and Davis' approach in general has been to his pull side. He's produced against every pitch type this spring, with an OPS over 1.000 against fastballs, breaking balls and offspeed offerings, though he has shown more swing and miss against changeups than other pitch types. Scouts are split on whether or not Davis will catch at the next level. He has the arm strength and athleticism—he's a good runner for a catcher—but needs to work on his blocking and receiving.

  3. 3. Quinn Priester | RHP
    Quinn Priester
    Born: Sep 15, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 195
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Cary, Ill., 2019 (1st round).
    Signed By: Anthony Wycklendt.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 40. Changeup: 50. Curveball: 60. Control: 55.

    TRACK RECORD: The Pirates drafted Priester out of high school with the 18th overall pick in 2019. He hadn't even turned 20 when the Pirates sent him to their alternate training site in 2020, but he was impressive enough facing some of the best hitting prospects in the system to show he may be a fast-mover despite his youth.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Priester's fastball jumped to 96-98 mph in short stints at the alternate training site, an encouraging development after he sat in the low 90s and touched 97 mph in his pro debut. He throws both a two-seamer with movement and a four-seamer he controls better. Priester complements his fastballs up with a plus low-80s curveball he can land for strikes or get swings and misses with. He improved his changeup by learning to consistently throw it like a fastball. Priester improved his control by staying taller in his delivery and keeping his upper and lower body in sync. He's made strides figuring out how to sequence and tunnel each pitch to improve his entire mix. Priester is a studious learner who quickly picks up the game's newest trends on pitch mechanics and deception.

    THE FUTURE: The Pirates are prepared to move Priester aggressively with his stuff and smarts. He has the potential to eventually join Mitch Keller at the front of the Pirates' rotation.

  4. 4. Nick Gonzales | 2B
    Nick Gonzales
    Born: May 27, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'10" Wt.: 190
    Drafted/Signed: New Mexico State, 2020 (1st round).
    Signed By: Derrick Van Dusen.

    Hitting: 70. Power: 45. Running: 55. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: Gonzales became the first draftee of the Ben Cherington era for the Pirates, signing for $5,432,400 as the seventh overall pick in 2020. That capped off an impressive transformation after he joined New Mexico State as a walk-on and went on to lead the nation in hitting while batting .432/.532/.773. He hit 12 home runs in 82 plate appearances in his brief junior season.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Gonzales' carrying tool is his bat. Despite his slight, 5-foot-10 frame, his elite contact skills, exceptional plate discipline and exemplary barrel control should allow him to hit annually for a high average. He consistently finds the barrel and his strong hands help him drive pitches to all fields, giving him surprising 15-20 home run power. Gonzales' above-average speed and advanced baserunning instincts should result in a handful of stolen bases, too. Gonzales has the arm strength for shortstop, but scouts question his short-area quickness and prefer him as a second baseman who can focus on being an elite hitter for the position.

    THE FUTURE: Scouts view Gonzales as a future all-star second baseman capable of competing for batting titles. He is advanced enough to jump on the fast track to the majors and arrive in Pittsburgh at some point in 2022.

  5. 5. Liover Peguero | SS
    Liover Peguero
    Born: Dec 31, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 160
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2017.
    Signed By: Cesar Geronimo (D-backs).

    Hitting: 60. Power: 50. Running: 55. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: The first big move Pirates general manager Ben Cherington made was to trade center fielder Starling Marte to the D-backs for Peguero and righthanded pitching prospect Brennan Malone in January 2020. The previous year, Peguero ranked as the No. 1 prospect in the Rookie-level Pioneer League and finished the campaign at short-season Hillsboro. The Pirates sent him to their alternate training site in 2020 to challenge him against older competition.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Peguero is a dynamic athlete with a long track record of hitting the ball hard. He has a strong, wiry build and has a natural feel for finding the barrel. He has worked the last two years to tone down his aggressive approach and be more selective at the plate. If those improvements continue, he has the feel for quality contact to be a plus hitter with average power as he fills out. Peguero improved his defense at shortstop with Arizona prior to the trade and continued his work at the position all year with the Pirates. He has above-average speed and the long strides to handle the outfield if he has to move.

    THE FUTURE: Peguero's bat will always be above his glove, but he has a chance to be the Pirates' shortstop of the future as long his defensive strides continue. He is slated to jump to full-season ball in 2021.

  6. 6. Roansy Contreras | RHP
    Roansy Contreras
    Born: Nov 7, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 197
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2016.
    Signed By: Juan Rosario. (Yankees)

    TRACK RECORD: Though the Yankees were in the international penalty box in 2016, they still unearthed several gems in Jose Devers (since traded to Miami), Oswald Peraza and Contreras, who was a product of the same training program in the Dominican Republic that produced Gary Sanchez and Miguel Andujar. Contreras was part of a talented group of pitchers at low Class A Charleston in 2019 but was not brought to the Yankees alternate training site in 2020. The Pirates acquired him as one of four players for Jameson Taillon after the season.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Contreras showed a small uptick in his velocity and averaged 95 mph on his fastball in spring training before camps shut down. The development of his breaking ball will be key. It's been more of an inconsistent slurve in the past, but he worked to make it more of a firm slider during limited time in 2020. His well-regarded changeup features both horizontal and vertical movement and is thrown with enough confidence to be effective against both righties and lefties. He's shown above-average control at every stop in the minors so far.

    THE FUTURE: Contreras worked remotely with Yankees pitching coach Dustin Glant during the shutdown and should be in decent pitching shape despite the lost year of development. He has back-of-the-rotation potential if his breaking ball comes along.

  7. 7. Tucupita Marcano | UTL
    Tucupita Marcano
    Born: Sep 16, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 165
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2016.
    Signed By: Antonio Alejos//Chris Kemp/Yfrain Linares.

    Hitting: 50. Power: 30. Running: 60. Fielding: 50. Arm: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: Marcano is the son of famed Venezuelan player Raul Marcano and signed with the Padres for $320,000 in 2016. After hitting .366 in his stateside debut, Marcano finished tied for fifth in the Midwest League in hits in his first full season in 2019 and hit .370 in the California League playoffs after being promoted. The Padres brought him to their alternate training site in 2020. Marcano was the top prospect included in the Padres-Pirates deadline deal for 2B Adam Frazier.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Marcano is extraordinarily lean and lacks power, but he knows who he is and doesn't try to do too much. He's a smart hitter who controls the strike zone and makes consistent contact with a direct, compact stroke. He lines the ball to all fields and is a prolific bunter with a great feel for when to lay one down, including on squeeze plays. He beats bunts out for singles with his plus speed, but he makes poor decisions on the basepaths and frequently gets picked off or caught stealing. Marcano is an average defender whose best asset is his versatility—he is solid at third base and second base, can fill in at shortstop and began playing left field and first base at the alternate site.

    THE FUTURE: Marcano is frequently described as a winning player who does the little things that make a difference. His contact skills and versatility have him ticketed for a utility role.

  8. 8. Carmen Mlodzinski | RHP
    Carmen Mlodzinski
    Born: Feb 19, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'2" Wt.: 231
    Drafted/Signed: South Carolina, 2020 (1st round supplemental).
    Signed By: Cam Murphy.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 55. Changeup: 40. Cutter: 55. Control: 55.

    TRACK RECORD: Mlodzinski was one of the 2020 draft's biggest question marks due to a lack of track record. He suffered a broken foot that limited him to three starts in 2019, made six starts in the Cape Cod League the following summer and had just four outings before the coronavirus pandemic shut down the 2020 college season. His stuff was undeniable, though, and the Pirates drafted him 31st overall and signed him for $2.05 million to turn pro as a redshirt sophomore.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Mlodzinski throws a heavy sinking fastball that sits 92-94 mph and has reached 98. He throws a slider and a cutter that have flashed plus potential, especially during an impressive performance in the Cape. Both pitches were less sharp in the spring, however, with the slider lacking depth and tilt, and his cutter sitting at a reduced 89-91 mph. Mlodzinski has a fringe-average curveball and a below-average changeup that each need to be improved. He throws strikes and generates a lot of ground balls with his fastball, but he's still trying to find a consistent swing-and-miss pitch.

    THE FUTURE: Mlodzinski is capable of being a groundball-oriented starter at the back of a rotation. He needs to find a consistent second pitch.

  9. 9. Hudson Head | OF
    Hudson Head
    Born: Apr 8, 2001
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: HS--San Antonio, 2019 (3rd round).
    Signed By: Kevin Ham. (Padres)

    Hitting: 50. Power: 55. Running: 60. Fielding: 50. Arm: 55.

    TRACK RECORD: Head played quarterback at his San Antonio high school and didn't draw baseball scouts' attention until he hit .645 with 13 home runs and 54 RBIs his senior year. The Padres drafted him in the third round and signed him for $3 million, a then-record for a third-rounder. Head spent time at the Padres alternate training site and instructional league in 2020, but he was limited by a recurring hamstring injury. The Pirates acquired him after the season as the top prospect in the trade that sent Joe Musgrove to San Diego.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Head is one of the best athletes in the Pirates' system. He's a lean, twitchy athlete who is a plus runner, has explosive bat speed and is ambidextrous—he threw with his right hand when he rolled right and threw with his left hand when he rolled left as a quarterback. Head has a lot of extra movement in his swing, which leads to questions whether he'll catch up to upper-end velocity. He drives balls with authority when he does connect and flashes surprising plus raw power out of his lean frame. Head is extremely aggressive on both sides of the ball. He needs to rein in his approach, and evaluators expressed concern he could hurt himself with how aggressively he plays center field. He's a potential above-average defender in center with an above-average arm when he plays under control.

    THE FUTURE: Head has plenty of athleticism, but he still has to prove he can make consistent contact against advanced pitching. He'll try to show he can in 2021.

  10. 10. Michael Burrows | RHP
    Michael Burrows
    Born: Nov 8, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 192
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Waterford, Conn., 2018 (11th round).
    Signed By: Eddie Charles.

    TRACK RECORD: The Pirates took Burrows in the 11th round in 2018 and gave him an above-slot $500,000 bonus--fourth-round money--to forgo a commitment to Connecticut. He quickly showed more polish than a typical high school pitcher and spent his first full season as a starter in the college-heavy New York-Penn League. The Pirates brought him to instructional league in 2020 after the coronavirus pandemic canceled the minor league season.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Burrows' mid-90s fastball touches as high as 96 mph with good sinking movement. His curveball has some late break, grading as above-average with the chance to be an out pitch in the future. Burrows' solid frame suggests he's capable of compiling innings in the rotation. His fringe-average changeup will need improvement and he walked 4.1 batters per nine innings in 2019, but his control has average upside. He has rapidly shown improvements in his velocity and breaking stuff and has room to make further gains.

    THE FUTURE: Burrows has the potential to be a back-of-the-rotation starter or a multi-inning reliever working off his fastball/curveball combination. He is set to begin 2021 at one of the Class A levels.

  11. 11. Tahnaj Thomas | RHP
    Tahnaj Thomas
    Born: Jun 16, 1999
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 190
    Drafted/Signed: Bahamas, 2016.
    Signed By: Koby Perez (Indians).

    Fastball: 70. Slider: 55. Changeup: 45. Control: 50.

    TRACK RECORD: Thomas trained as a shortstop in the Bahamas and moved to the mound only after signing with the Indians for $200,000 in 2016. The Pirates acquired Thomas in the November 2018 that trade sent Jordan Luplow and Max Moroff to Cleveland. Thomas' velocity spiked and his control improved after the trade, helping him emerge as one of the top pitchers in the Rookie-level Appalachian League in 2019.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Thomas hasn't pitched in a live game since 2019 because of the coronavirus pandemic, but he was sitting 95-99 mph and touching 101 with Bristol at the end of that season. His fastball gets swings and misses with plus life up in the zone, and he has steadily improved his control to become an average strike-thrower. Thomas relies heavily on his fastball, but his slider flashes above-average potential and generates swings and misses at its best. He throws his fringe-average changeup sparingly.

    THE FUTURE: Thomas has the kind of overpowering fastball that dominates hitters, but he needs to refine his secondary pitches. He has a chance to stick as a starter if he can improve his changeup or find another offspeed pitch. If not, he can be a dominant reliever with his fastball/slider combination.

  12. 12. Jared Jones | RHP
    Jared Jones
    Born: Aug 6, 2001
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: HS--La Mirada, Calif., 2020 (2nd round).
    Signed By: Brian Tracy.

    TRACK RECORD: Jones was a well-known draft prospect after playing for USA Baseball's Junior National Team three times as a two-way player. The Pirates drafted him 44th overall as a pitcher in 2020 and gave him an above-slot $2.2 million bonus to pry him from a Texas commitment. Jones' father Keith played two seasons in the minors. Cousins Randy and Ron Flores both pitched in the majors.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Jones is undersized but already owns a lively 96-99 mph fastball thanks to his electric arm speed. He pairs it with a sharp, above-average, mid-80s slider, and he is developing a changeup. The Pirates have worked with Jones on adjusting his effortful delivery to improve both his command and control. He showed power potential and above-average speed as a high school outfielder, but he was a bit of a free-swinger and the Pirates typically stick to developing players on one side of the game.

    THE FUTURE: Some evaluators peg Jones as a bullpen candidate because of his size and effortful delivery. The Pirates will give him every chance to develop his changeup and remain on a starter track.

  13. 13. Bubba Chandler | RHP
    Bubba Chandler
    Born: Sep 14, 2002
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 200

    In a 2021 class littered with standout high school athletes, Chandler might be one of the best. A multi-sport athlete, Chandler is a four-star quarterback according to 247Sports and is committed to Clemson for both football and baseball. He can throw a football 40 yards down field with his left hand and he can also windmill dunk on the basketball court. Understandably, many teams are excited about the massive upside Chandler could have if he ever focuses exclusively on baseball. On the diamond, he's a talented righthander and shortstop, with most teams preferring him on the mound, but a handful are either on him as a hitter or open-minded to letting him try the two-way experiment. Chandler has touched 97 mph this spring, but more typically works in the 89-93 mph range with his fastball. He's shown a mid-70s curveball with above-average spin rate that scouts believe could develop into a plus pitch and he's also thrown a changeup that needs more work. Chandler's delivery needs work, as he gets by more on athleticism than on pristine mechanics. He doesn't fully incorporate his legs at the moment, and while he has a super-fast arm, some scouts don't love his high arm slot. His secondaries are both inconsistent now and his strikes have been scattered, but those who like Chandler believe he has the athleticism and natural feel for spin to make a massive leap with the help of pro player development and with an 100% focus on baseball. Chandler is a switch-hitting shortstop who has solid raw power in the tank and a better swing from the right side than the left, with lots of contact out of a quick, line-drive oriented swing. Chandler isn't a refined defender now, but when he gets moving he can cover plenty of ground and he certainly has the arm strength for the left side of the infield. With all of those tools and athleticism in a 6-foot-3, 200-pound frame, Chandler's upside is tremendous.

  14. 14. Travis Swaggerty | OF
    Travis Swaggerty
    Born: Aug 19, 1997
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 5'10" Wt.: 183
    Drafted/Signed: South Alabama, 2018 (1st round).
    Signed By: Darren Mazeroski.

    TRACK RECORD: The Pirates drafted Swaggerty 10th overall in 2018 and gave him a $4.4 million bonus based on the power-speed combination he showed at South Alabama. Swaggerty's speed has translated to pro ball, but his power has not. Swaggerty hit a combined .257/.339/.381 in his first two seasons, topping out at high Class A. The Pirates brought him to their alternate training site in 2020.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Swaggerty has the potential for average or better tools across the board, but he simply doesn't make enough contact. He tends to sell out for power, leading to a lot of swings and misses and a decline in his overall offensive game. Swaggerty worked to clean up his hitting mechanics, but the lost 2020 minor league season didn't give him a chance to show off the results of his work. He draws plenty of walks, which allows his plus speed to play on the bases. Swaggerty's defense is ahead of his offense. He's a plus defender with the range and above-average arm strength to be the Pirates' center fielder of the future.

    THE FUTURE: Swaggerty has to start making more contact. If he can, he has the tools to be an everyday outfielder.

  15. 15. Cody Bolton | RHP
    Cody Bolton
    Born: Jun 19, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 185
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Tracy, Calif., 2017 (6th round).
    Signed By: Mike Sansoe.

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 55. Changeup: 50. Control: 55.

    TRACK RECORD: The Pirates drafted Bolton in the sixth round in 2017 and signed him for an over-slot $300,000 bonus. He was shut down with forearm soreness after nine starts in 2018 and received a platelet-rich plasma injection, but he came back throwing harder with better control in 2019 and vaulted up to Double-A. He spent 2020 at the alternate training site in Altoona, Pa.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Bolton has grown into his projectable frame and now sits 93-96 mph on a consistent basis, while touching 98. He has both a four-seamer and a two-seamer he keeps in the bottom part of the zone in the low 90s, forcing hitters to look for two different fastballs in two different parts of the zone. Bolton added a cutter in 2019 and has developed it into a potentially above-average pitch that pairs nicely with his two-seamer. His average changeup gives him a competitive offering against lefthanded hitters and gives him the third pitch needed to start. Bolton pounds the strike zone out of his low three-quarters arm slot and keeps his walks to a minimum.

    THE FUTURE: Bolton has the body, stuff and control to profile as a middle to back-of-the-rotation starter. If his development stalls, he has a fallback as a power reliever with his fastball/cutter combination.

  16. 16. Miguel Yajure | RHP
    Miguel Yajure
    Born: May 1, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 175
    Drafted/Signed: Venezuela, 2015.
    Signed By: Cesar Suarez/Ricardo Finol. (Yankees)

    Fastball: 55. Curveball: 60. Cutter: 50. Changeup: 55. Control: 55.
    Track Record: The Yankees signed Yajure out of Venezuela for $30,000 in 2015 on the strength of two innings at a tryout. He missed the 2017 season after having Tommy John surgery, returned in 2018 and broke out in 2019 as he jumped to Double-A. The Yankees added Yajure to their 40-man roster after the 2019 season and called him up for his big league debut on Aug. 31, 2020. The Pirates acquired him after the season as the top prospect in the trade that sent Jameson Taillon to New York.

    Scouting Report: Yajure added velocity through a weighted-ball program and a series of delivery tweaks after the 2019 season that were designed to better incorporate his lower half. The result was a nearly 2 mph jump in his average fastball velocity, up to 92 mph in 2020. Yajure complements his enhanced four-seamer with a cutter, slider, curveball and changeup. His high-80s changeup, which he feels comfortable throwing against both righties and lefties, is his go-to secondary pitch and shows above-average potential. His curveball is a 12-to-6 breaker thrown in the low 80s and forms an ideal tunnel with his four-seamer. His cutter and slider were added to give him more options against righthanders. Yajure struggled with walks in 2020 but had above-average control in the minors.

    The Future: Yajure has a chance to break camp with the Pirates. He should get the chance to pitch in their rotation at some point during the 2021 season and projects to settle in as a back-end starter.

  17. 17. Endy Rodriguez | C
    Endy Rodriguez
    Born: May 26, 2000
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 170

    The Pirates are excited about Rodriguez, the switch-hitting catcher they acquired from the Mets in the three-team Joe Musgrove deal. Rodriguez can spray line drives all over the yard thanks to an innate knack for finding the barrel and a mature approach capable of handling fastballs and recognizing spin. Rodriguez is an agile defender behind the plate with an average arm and he showed no issues receiving high-end velocity. Rodriguez hasn't tapped into his power consistently—his average exit velocity is just north of 84 mph—but the Pirates believe it's coming.

  18. 18. Maikol Escotto | SS
    Maikol Escotto
    Born: Jun 4, 2002
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 5'11" Wt.: 180
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2018.
    Signed By: Juan Rosario/Esteban Castillo.

    Escotto is another teenager trending up on a Bradenton roster teeming with them. Acquired via the Yankees in the Jameson Taillon trade, Escotto has the chance for above-average hit and power tools while sticking at shortstop. He controls the strike zone well—especially against sliders this year—and his 121 wRC+ was tops among all Bradenton hitters as of July 19. Escotto hits too many balls on the ground (52% groundball rate) but he shows more raw power in batting practice. Some wonder if his muscular frame may ultimately push him toward becoming an offensive-minded second baseman in the big leagues, but he's handled shortstop adequately so far.

  19. 19. Ji-Hwan Bae | SS
    Ji-Hwan Bae
    Born: Jul 26, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 170
    Drafted/Signed: South Korea, 2018.
    Signed By: Fu-chun Chiang/Tony Harris.

    Hitting: 60. Power: 30. Running: 70. Fielding: 55. Arm: 40.

    TRACK RECORD: Bae originally signed with the Braves but was declared a free agent after MLB ruled the Braves violated international signing rules. The Pirates signed him in early 2018 for $1.25 million. Bae was convicted of assaulting his girlfriend in South Korea and served a 30-game suspension during the 2019 season. He returned to low Class A Greensboro in late May and won the South Atlantic League batting title with a .323 average. The Pirates brought him to their alternate training site in 2020.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Bae projects as a prototypical top-of-the-order shortstop with a contact bat and plus speed. He makes some of the best contact in the system and uses his speed to beat out infield singles and take extra bases when he drives the ball into the gaps. Bae lacks home run power with his slight build, so his slugging contributions will come from doubles and triples. Bae has the range to be an above-average defender at shortstop, but his lack of arm strength raises questions about his ability to stick at the position. His assault conviction raises obvious concerns about his makeup.

    THE FUTURE: Bae has a chance to develop into a table-setter at the top of the order or a No. 8 hitter who provides value with his speed and defense. He may see Double-A in 2021.

  20. 20. Cal Mitchell | OF
    Cal Mitchell
    Born: Mar 8, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 216
    Drafted/Signed: HS--San Diego, 2017 (2nd round).
    Signed By: Brian Tracy.

    TRACK RECORD: Mitchell has shown tantalizing offensive upside since the Pirates took him in the second round in 2017. He's shown a smooth stroke and an increased ability to hit for power, capped by 15 homers in the pitcher-friendly Florida State League in 2019, but also far too many swings and misses. He spent 2020 at instructional league working to fix that.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Known mainly as a contact hitter when he was drafted, Mitchell's profile has changed as he's matured. His driving tool is now the plus raw power in his lefthanded bat. He's shown an ability to hit to all fields and also displays a patient approach at the plate. At the same time, Mitchell chases the power far too often and gets into trouble when he tries to pull the ball. He is going to have to make more contact because he doesn't offer much defensively. Mitchell is slated for left field as a belowaverage runner and fringe-average defender with an arm that grades as average at best.

    THE FUTURE: Mitchell should start 2021 in Double-A. If he can figure things out at the plate, the Pirates don't have many prospects blocking his path to PNC Park.

  21. 21. Anthony Solometo | LHP
    Anthony Solometo
    Born: Dec 2, 2002
    Bats: L Throws: L
    Ht.: 6'5" Wt.: 220

    Solometo has continued to build his stock from last summer, growing from a promising lefty with a funky delivery into one of the top prep arms in the country. He starts his delivery with a big leg kick leading into a long, deep arm swing in the back reminiscent of Madison Bumgarner's arm action. That delivery adds deception and makes for uncomfortable at-bats, but all those long, moving parts also gave several scouts hesitancy about his ability to repeat and throw strikes consistently. However, Solometo performed well last summer, stamped by an outstanding showing at the Future Stars Series at Fenway Park in September. He continued to show command of both his fastball and slider this spring, though there have been outings where his control backed up and he missed to his arm side. His fastball sits around 89-93 mph with arm-side life and he has the ability to reach back for 96 when he needs an extra gear. He consistently gets ahead of hitters, throwing strikes with his fastball to both sides of the plate. His low-80s slider is a plus pitch at times and Solometo is adept at executing it down in the zone, comfortably throwing it to the back foot of righthanded hitters or landing it to his arm side. Solometo doesn't throw his changeup much and it's hit or miss, but he has shown some feel for that pitch too. Solometo doesn't have the same fastball or athleticism as fellow New Jersey prep pitcher Chase Petty, but he's a lefty who throws more strikes with a less stressful delivery, so some scouts prefer Solometo.

  22. 22. Lonnie White | OF
    Lonnie White
    Born: Dec 31, 2002
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 212

    White originally committed to Clemson for baseball, but he switched his commitment in May 2020 to Penn State to play both baseball and wide receiver for the football team. A three-sport athlete who also played high school basketball, White is a physical, explosive player with a well-rounded tool set. He also has a good track record of game performance going back to last summer, including an MVP award from the Perfect Game 17U National Championship in July, a long home run off a 94 mph fastball at the Area Code Games and another productive tournament at the World Wood Bat Championship in October. He has continued to hit well for the most part this spring, albeit with some swing and miss to his game, but he has shown feel for hitting, especially given his multi-sport background. White is physically mature for his age, but he has the strength, bat speed and swing conducive to tapping into what should consistently be plus raw power. White is built like a corner outfielder, but he's a plus runner now with good instincts in center field. Those skills give him a chance to start out in center field, though with his body type, he probably will slow down. If he slides over to right field, he has the tools to be an above-average defender there, including an arm that's improved to a tick above-average.

  23. 23. Rodolfo Castro | 2B
    Rodolfo Castro
    Born: May 21, 1999
    Bats: B Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 210
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2015.
    Signed By: Rene Gayo, Juan Mercaso, and Jose Ortiz.

    TRACK RECORD: The shortened 2020 season was something of a breakout for Castro, who originally signed for $150,000 out of the Dominican Republic in 2015 and had yet to advance past high Class A. He showed a more mature, refined skill set at the Pirates' alternate training site, impressing the club enough that they added him to their 40-man roster after the season

    SCOUTING REPORT: Castro is very toolsy but has been very raw to this point, with swing-and-miss concerns at the plate and defensive inconsistencies in the infield. He improved his defensive work in 2020, and the Pirates believe he can play second base, shortstop and third base in the majors. He's a switch-hitter with above-average or better raw power from each side. He has above-average speed, giving him plenty of range in the field and allowing him to steal bases. The biggest downside to his game has been his strikeout tendencies and general lack of contact skills.

    THE FUTURE: Castro is unlikely to hit for average but can contribute with his power and defensive versatility. He will likely open 2021 back in the minors.

  24. 24. Carter Bins | C
    Carter Bins
    Born: Oct 7, 1998
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 200
    Drafted/Signed: Fresno State, 2019 (11th round).
    Signed By: Chris Hom.

    Bins was an arrow-up name in the Mariners system prior to a deadline deal with Pittsburgh thanks to above-average defensive tools across the board and burgeoning power. He was hitting .284/.422/.493 at High-A Everett prior to a promotion to Double-A and impressed with his on-base ability, although there are longstanding questions about his tool that weren't exactly tempered by his 29% strikeout rate at Everett, either.

  25. 25. Max Kranick | RHP
    Max Kranick
    Born: Jul 21, 1997
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 214
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Archbald, Pa., 2016 (11th round).
    Signed By: Dan Radcliff.

    TRACK RECORD: Kranick fell to the 11th round in 2016 because of signability concerns stemming from his commitment to Virginia. The Pirates stopped his slide and convinced him to sign for an over-slot $300,000 bonus. Kranick kick-started his development with solid seasons at low Class A in 2018 and high Class A in 2019. The Pirates brought him to the alternate training site in 2020 and added him to the 40-man roster after the season.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Kranick dealt with shoulder fatigue and tightness early in his career, so he turned to former major league reliever Vic Black to help with weighted ball drills to increase strength. He also shortened his arm path and gained velocity throughout the process. Kranick's fastball sat 93-94 mph and touched 98 at the Pirates' alternate training site. He ditched his two-seam fastball entirely, instead focusing on his four-seamer and curveball combination. His four-seamer features more movement up in the zone and he worked with former big league closer Joel Hanrahan on tunneling the curveball to look like the fastball out of the hand. Kranick also has an average slider and below-average changeup. He throws strikes with above-average control.

    THE FUTURE: Kranick should start in Double-A in 2021. His newfound velocity and arm strength give him a good chance to reach the majors.

  26. 26. Matt Fraizer | OF
    Matt Fraizer
    Born: Jan 12, 1998
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'3" Wt.: 205

    Few High-A hitters have done as much damage as Fraizer, who is top 10 in average, home runs, OPS and wRC+. The power surge is particularly notable considering he hit .221/.287/.266 with zero homers as a 21-year-old in Low-A in 2019 after Pittsburgh drafted him in the third round out of Arizona. Fraizer re-tooled his swing during the 2020 shutdown, focusing on his balance and impacting the baseball in front of the strike zone to tap more into his above-average raw power. The mechanical changes coupled with renewed plate discipline have helped unlock a breakout year and should result in a promotion to Double-A before long. Defensively, Fraizer has the speed to handle center field but his fringy arm may be better suited for left field.

  27. 27. Eddy Yean | RHP
    Eddy Yean
    Born: Jun 25, 2001
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 230
    Drafted/Signed: Dominican Republic, 2017.
    Signed By: Modesto Ulloa. (Nationals)

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 55. Changeup: 50. Control: 50.
    TRACK RECORD: Yean was a projectable 180-pound righthander when he signed with the Nationals for $100,000 in 2017. He's grown quite a bit since then, bulking up to 230 pounds with a muscular, linebacker-like build. He made his U.S. debut in 2019 and reached short-season Auburn, but he did not get to pitch in 2020 with the cancellation of the minor league season. He picked up where he left off with an impressive turn at instructional league. The Pirates acquired him in December as the top prospect in the trade that sent Josh Bell to Washington.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Yean is a big, powerful pitcher who is aggressive and still growing. He has an explosive fastball that sits in the mid 90s and touches 97 mph with late life. He throws both a four-seam fastball and a two-seamer to keep batters guessing which one they'll see. Yean's slider is a little slurvy at this point but gets swings and misses and shows above-average potential, especially if he is able to firm it up. His changeup is improving as well and could be an average pitch in time. Yean has a clean, three-quarters arm slot and a feel for making adjustments.

    THE FUTURE: Yean is still learning the details of pitching rather than throwing, but there are reasons to be bullish on his upside. He should be ready for a full-season assignment at age 19 in 2021.

  28. 28. Brennan Malone | RHP
    Brennan Malone
    Born: Sep 8, 2000
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'4" Wt.: 205
    Drafted/Signed: HS--Bradenton, Fla., 2019 (1st round).
    Signed By: Matt Mercurio (D-backs).

    Fastball: 60. Slider: 60. Changeup: 50. Curveball: 50. Control: 45.

    TRACK RECORD: The D-backs drafted Malone with the 33rd pick in the 2019 draft and signed him for an above-slot $2.2 million to keep him from a North Carolina commitment. The Pirates acquired him with Liover Peguero for Starling Marte in January 2020. Malone reported to the Pirates' alternate training site in Altoona, Pa., after the pandemic canceled the minor league season, but he was never cleared for on-field activity.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Malone is a physical, projectable pitcher still learning to harness his potent stuff. His fastball sits at 93 mph and touches the upper 90s with heavy sink, and his slider is a potential plus pitch with late, sharp break. He focused on developing his curveball during the shutdown and transformed it from a slurvy pitch to a spike-curveball that shows average potential. His changeup isn't consistent but flashes average potential. Malone has a strong, durable frame and an athletic delivery, but he can be a bit wild and spent the shutdown working to shorten his arm path in an attempt to throw more strikes more consistently.

    THE FUTURE: Malone made his Pirates debut in instructional league and should see full-season ball in 2021. He has mid-rotation potential but is a long way from that ceiling.

  29. 29. Canaan Smith-Njigba | OF
    Canaan Smith-Njigba
    Born: Apr 30, 1999
    Bats: L Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'0" Wt.: 215
    Drafted/Signed: Mexico, 2017.
    Signed By: Mike Leuzinger. (Yankees)

    TRACK RECORD: Smith showed well in his first taste of pro ball after the Yankees drafted him in the fourth round in 2017, then scuffled in 2018 in the college-heavy New York-Penn League. He rebounded in 2019 at low Class A Charleston, where he became one of just 15 players in the minors with 30 or more doubles, 10 or more home runs and 15 or more stolen bases. He did not get a chance to play in 2020, but the Pirates still acquired him as one of four players for Jameson Taillon after the season.

    SCOUTING REPORT: Smith's greatest asset is he simply hits the ball hard. He averaged an 89.4 mph exit velocity in 2019 and has peaked at 110. He shows strong pitch-recognition skills, handles velocity well and posted an excellent swinging-strike rate of just 9.7%. Despite the success, scouts have mild concerns Smith will be exploited by upper-level pitchers who do better jobs changing speeds and throwing offspeed pitches for strikes. Smith shows average athleticism, a fringy arm and below-average defense in left field. He's an average runner who steals bases on instincts rather than pure speed.

    THE FUTURE: Because the Yankees did not hold instructional league, Smith missed a full season of development. Now that he's with the Pirates, his defense will come under even more scrutiny unless the National League permanently adopts the designated hitter.

  30. 30. Rodolfo Nolasco | OF
    Rodolfo Nolasco
    Born: Sep 23, 2001
    Bats: R Throws: R
    Ht.: 6'1" Wt.: 175

    A minor injury during spring training slowed Nolasco's start to the season, but there's still plenty of excitement within the Pirates organization for Nolasco's plus power potential, even if he doesn't get to it as frequently in games yet. He's shown quality pitch recognition and plate discipline for a teenager, too. Nolasco is one of several recent international signings trending in the right direction for Pittsburgh and has a shot to reach Low-A Bradenton by the end of the season.

View Players 11-30

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