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05-15-2010, 10:05 PM
Big McLargehuge
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Originally Posted by obanga View Post
Oh damn, that really sucks. :/

Pirates's farm isn't very deep right? Other than their top prospects, it's kinda icky down there?
Quite the opposite, now that Huntington has taken over. The past two drafts have been of a spread the wealth mentality, involving the Pirates spending more money on bonuses than any other team in the past two years. We've got a glut of #3 potential starters and 3 tool batters, they're just all very low in the system aside from Alvarez, Lincoln (was considered by many to be the best player in his draft class, but almost instantly required Tommy John Surgery (a requirement far too frequent from Littlefield and Bonifay drafts to think it was a fluke), and Tabata (acquired in a Huntington trade for Xavier Nady).

The Pirates system is deeper than its ever been in my life as a fan, but we're just not that deep in top-heavy prospects. Alvarez has star potential, and last year's graduate McCutchen is already a star...otherwise the prospects are all either very nice but lacking in at least one major tool (Tabata's lack of power prevents him from being a monster prospect, but he's still got everything to be a damn good player...Lincoln lost a lot of velocity because of the Tommy John Surgery, but has improved his breaking stuff because of it, etc.). The most intriguing prospects in the system are still low...unfortunately Marte means the fall (or at least year stagnation) or our most intriguing batting prospect after Alvarez, but our most intriguing pitching prospect still hasn't thrown an inning this year (Zach Von Rosenberg, a first round talent that the Pirates drafted in the sixth round last year after an apparently 'unbreakable' commitment to LSU, which involved Von Rosenberg getting more than half of the bonus that 4th overall pick Tony Sanchez received and paid tuition to LSU for Texas-native Von Rosenberg. Out of pure stuff Von Rosenberg may be the best pitching prospect to enter the Pirates system since Kris Benson. Being drafted directly out of high school he's to start in low A West Virginia this year). But at that raw of a prospect its still hard to take them extremely seriously.

This is a make-or-break draft for the Pirates. Huntington's system has given great rewards to date, but three magnificent drafts in a row would be huge. The Pirates only real hope at being a competitor in this league is going to be through the draft, as we can't offer the international bonuses that teams like New York, Boston, and Anaheim can offer (though the international scouting staff has been nearly tripled in size under Huntington and the budget has been doubled)...but if we can draft smartly and have a few of these spread-the-wealth drafts...we may have a decent team in a few years. I just hope that happens before Andrew McCutchen leaves town...I've never been as much of a fan of a player in my 18 years as a Pirates fan (fml) as I have been of McCutchen. He's a legitimate five-tool player with a slight frame (to say the least, the fact he hits any home runs with his frame is bordering on miraculous) who is the definition of a character player, playing a huge part in Lasting Milledge's reformation (though Milledge has performed poorly last year his life has done an essential 180 since joining the Pirates system and dealing with McCutchen).

Pre-Huntington any success by Pirates draftees seemed purely of the 'if you throw enough **** against the wall some of it is bound to stick' mentality. The Danny Moskos and Bryan Bullington selections speak for themselves.

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