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Keith Law's farm system ranks

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Posted: 02/04/2013 11:51 AM

Keith Law's farm system ranks 


Does anyone here have ESPN insider and would like to share with us Keith Law's farm system ranks?  This would be really awesome!

Thanks!
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Posted: 02/04/2013 12:08 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


I don't have ESPN Insider, but I saw someone post elsewhere that he had us ranked 7th.
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Posted: 02/04/2013 12:47 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


He had us 7th and said that Cole and Taillon rival anything other clubs have to offer, that West Virginia roster was one of the strongest teams for prospects in all the minors last season, including up the middle bats.  But, he said that the Bell injury is what hurt the system since he missed most of the year.

I took from it that if Josh Bell were healthy last year and put up good numbers he probably would have had us in his top 5, but couldn't do that since Bell is technically still a question mark.  As those West Virginia prospects become more established at higher levels I expect the system to rise even more. 

It is hard to rival Polanco, Hansen, Garcia, Bell, Osuna, Gamache, Barnes (will join them this year), and Kingham essentially coming up together on the same team.  Plus add in Heredia, Holmes, Mathisen, Jhang, Glasnow, and Herrera only a level behind them and that is a pretty stacked group of A-ball players.
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Posted: 02/04/2013 1:01 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


It is all nice to see, and I'm glad we are ranked so high, but results at the MLB level are all that matter to me. 

I think Abe was the one who said that “The chicken never cackles until after it has laid the egg.”  Smart man.

___________

 

  

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Posted: 02/04/2013 3:45 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



gr1111 wrote: It is all nice to see, and I'm glad we are ranked so high, but results at the MLB level are all that matter to me. 

I think Abe was the one who said that “The chicken never cackles until after it has laid the egg.”  Smart man.
Is Abe the smart man or are you referring to the chicken?
"I originally said he would get fired in mid-May after a poor start, but honestly, he might not make it to May at this rate." A 'professional' opinion of Manager of the Year Clint Hurdle 4/8/13
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Posted: 02/04/2013 6:19 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



gr1111 wrote: It is all nice to see, and I'm glad we are ranked so high, but results at the MLB level are all that matter to me. 

I think Abe was the one who said that “The chicken never cackles until after it has laid the egg.”  Smart man.

Well obviously, but the results at the MLB level are mostly determined by the quality of our minor league system as a smaller market team.
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Posted: 02/04/2013 10:13 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


Fine point! A little of both.

---------------------------------------------
--- GhostOfPBG wrote:


gr1111 wrote: It is all nice to see, and I'm glad we are ranked so high, but results at the MLB level are all that matter to me. 

I think Abe was the one who said that “The chicken never cackles until after it has laid the egg.”  Smart man.
Is Abe the smart man or are you referring to the chicken?

---------------------------------------------

___________

 

  

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Posted: 02/04/2013 10:16 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


It is nice to think so,

---------------------------------------------
--- cferrel3 wrote:


gr1111 wrote: It is all nice to see, and I'm glad we are ranked so high, but results at the MLB level are all that matter to me. 

I think Abe was the one who said that “The chicken never cackles until after it has laid the egg.”  Smart man.

Well obviously, but the results at the MLB level are mostly determined by the quality of our minor league system as a smaller market team.

---------------------------------------------

___________

 

  

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Posted: 02/05/2013 6:01 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.
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Posted: 02/05/2013 6:46 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.



I agree with all of that, william.  Just an observation -- over the years, isn't it always the case that most of our best prospects are in A ball?

___________

 

  

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Posted: 02/05/2013 6:58 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.

I agree entirely with 2 exceptions.  First, I think we would really only need half (at most) of that group of A-ball players to "work out" (i.e. be productive for the Pirates or used acquire someone that is productive for the Pirates).  Some will inevitably not make it to the big leagues or fail once they get there, that is why having large numbers of above average prospects is crucial for an organization like the Pirates.

And second, I think the depth is there above A-ball.  Besides Cole and Taillon, you have Irwin, McPherson, Locke, Wilson, and Cumpton that have come up through the Pirates organization, Oliver and Pimental acquired via trade, and Kingham, who has a chance to bump up to AA quickly with a strong start in Bradenton.  So while most of those guys profile as having an upside as a number 3 starter or lower, that is all you really need with Cole and Taillon (and free-agents/trade acquisitions) leading the rotation in the next few years.
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Posted: 02/05/2013 6:58 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



gr1111 wrote:
I agree with all of that, william.  Just an observation -- over the years, isn't it always the case that most of our best prospects are in A ball?
Yes - you want your best prospects in A ball as it gives the GM 3-4 years job security to see if they work out or not.  If they don't work out make sure you have a few other guys hitting .320 in low and mid A ball.
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Posted: 02/05/2013 7:02 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



gr1111 wrote:
williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.



I agree with all of that, william.  Just an observation -- over the years, isn't it always the case that most of our best prospects are in A ball?

No, over the years we have only had 2 or 3 legit prospects in the entire organization, this has changed the last few of seasons.  And our best prospects this season are in AA and AAA respectively (Cole and Taillon) with a bunch of guys on the Major League roster having been called up the last few seasons.  So your assessment is a little off base.
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Posted: 02/05/2013 7:12 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



cferrel3 wrote:
gr1111 wrote:
williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.



I agree with all of that, william.  Just an observation -- over the years, isn't it always the case that most of our best prospects are in A ball?

No, over the years we have only had 2 or 3 legit prospects in the entire organization, this has changed the last few of seasons.  And our best prospects this season are in AA and AAA respectively (Cole and Taillon) with a bunch of guys on the Major League roster having been called up the last few seasons.  So your assessment is a little off base.


On this board, we have had glowing reviews of the A ball talent for years now.  The buzz word is always "patience" -- the cavalry is just a few years away.

After a long while, it gets frustrating.

___________

 

  

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Posted: 02/05/2013 7:24 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



Sangue wrote:
gr1111 wrote:
I agree with all of that, william.  Just an observation -- over the years, isn't it always the case that most of our best prospects are in A ball?
Yes - you want your best prospects in A ball as it gives the GM 3-4 years job security to see if they work out or not.  If they don't work out make sure you have a few other guys hitting .320 in low and mid A ball.



Patience -- the cavalry is on the way!  biggrin

___________

 

  

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Posted: 02/05/2013 8:24 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



cferrel3 wrote:
williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.

I agree entirely with 2 exceptions.  First, I think we would really only need half (at most) of that group of A-ball players to "work out" (i.e. be productive for the Pirates or used acquire someone that is productive for the Pirates).  Some will inevitably not make it to the big leagues or fail once they get there, that is why having large numbers of above average prospects is crucial for an organization like the Pirates.

And second, I think the depth is there above A-ball.  Besides Cole and Taillon, you have Irwin, McPherson, Locke, Wilson, and Cumpton that have come up through the Pirates organization, Oliver and Pimental acquired via trade, and Kingham, who has a chance to bump up to AA quickly with a strong start in Bradenton.  So while most of those guys profile as having an upside as a number 3 starter or lower, that is all you really need with Cole and Taillon (and free-agents/trade acquisitions) leading the rotation in the next few years.
The only thing I'd like to clarify in this is the word "depth".  Do you mean depth as in, if Burnett gets hurt, any of these guys can step in and give us 85% of what Burnett would... or as in, if Burnett gets hurt, we have 6 other guys we can call up to give a chance to fill the role and we don't have to worry about paying a $2M journeyman starter $7M to come and bail us out?  If its the former, I whole-heartedly disagree with you... if it's the latter, I completely agree with you.

To me, there's depth... and then there's DEPTH.  DEPTH is what the Packers have at WR.  Donald Driver gets hurt... that's ok, we have Jordy Nelson.  Oh, Jennings is hurt... that's ok, we have James Jones.  Uh-oh, Nelson is hurt... that's ok, we have Randall Cobb.  Then, there's depth - like what the Buccaneers have.  Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams are a really good pair... but if either of them got hurt and Tiquan Underwood had to start, it just wouldn't be pretty.
#fringeprospect

Last edited 02/05/2013 8:26 AM by TBayXXXVII

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Posted: 02/05/2013 8:47 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



TBayXXXVII wrote:
cferrel3 wrote:
williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.

I agree entirely with 2 exceptions.  First, I think we would really only need half (at most) of that group of A-ball players to "work out" (i.e. be productive for the Pirates or used acquire someone that is productive for the Pirates).  Some will inevitably not make it to the big leagues or fail once they get there, that is why having large numbers of above average prospects is crucial for an organization like the Pirates.

And second, I think the depth is there above A-ball.  Besides Cole and Taillon, you have Irwin, McPherson, Locke, Wilson, and Cumpton that have come up through the Pirates organization, Oliver and Pimental acquired via trade, and Kingham, who has a chance to bump up to AA quickly with a strong start in Bradenton.  So while most of those guys profile as having an upside as a number 3 starter or lower, that is all you really need with Cole and Taillon (and free-agents/trade acquisitions) leading the rotation in the next few years.
The only thing I'd like to clarify in this is the word "depth".  Do you mean depth as in, if Burnett gets hurt, any of these guys can step in and give us 85% of what Burnett would... or as in, if Burnett gets hurt, we have 6 other guys we can call up to give a chance to fill the role and we don't have to worry about paying a $2M journeyman starter $7M to come and bail us out?  If its the former, I whole-heartedly disagree with you... if it's the latter, I completely agree with you.

To me, there's depth... and then there's DEPTH.  DEPTH is what the Packers have at WR.  Donald Driver gets hurt... that's ok, we have Jordy Nelson.  Oh, Jennings is hurt... that's ok, we have James Jones.  Uh-oh, Nelson is hurt... that's ok, we have Randall Cobb.  Then, there's depth - like what the Buccaneers have.  Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams are a really good pair... but if either of them got hurt and Tiquan Underwood had to start, it just wouldn't be pretty.

I think we have plenty of guys that could give us close to 85% of what Burnett does, which would be an ERA of over 4.00 (if Burnett duplicates last season).  You can't expect your "depth" to come in and pitch as well as your best starting pitcher, that is unrealistic.  You expect them to be able to come in and "hold the fort" so to speak.  However, I think guys like Locke, Karstens, McPherson, Irwin, Cole, Oliver, and possibly Sanchez could come in and duplicate every guy in our rotation except for Burnett and Rodriguez. 

That to me is the definition of depth, which the Pirates have a ton of in the starting pitching department.  Where the Pirates are lacking is an ace at the front of the rotation, which is where Cole and Taillon in a couple years factoring in, aces don't grow on trees and are pretty rare.
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Posted: 02/06/2013 6:17 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



cferrel3 wrote:
TBayXXXVII wrote:
cferrel3 wrote:
williamjpellas wrote: There are starting to be larger numbers of prospects filling up the lower reaches of the Pirates' farm system.  To this point I have been critical of the current regime for the relatively paltry number of replacement-level-or-better, legitimate big leaguers that have graduated from the farm system.  In fairness I will admit that IF the wave of players currently at West Virginia and Bradenton make it to the majors more or less all at once, and IF that wave can be followed by similar numbers in most years after that, then yes: they will have achieved elite status as an organization.  THAT kind of production, to my mind, would make the Pirates a consistent top 5 organization, and there's no way that kind of young talent won't produce at least some winning seasons for the parent club. 


That said, a lot of things can still happen with young players---particularly pitchers---on the road to the big leagues.  Which is why I raised my objection in the first place, ie, it's great to have a couple of blue chip pitching prospects like Cole and Taillon, but where's the depth to go with them?  It would appear that the depth is currently in A-ball.  In which case, it took the current regime entirely too long and through too many drafts to achieve that kind of depth.  The year they took Sanchez and loaded up on all the high school arms really set the system back and slowed the rebuild by at least a couple of years.  Granted, they were exceptionally unlucky with those high school pitchers.  Even so, that was a high risk, high reward strategy and they didn't take enough "safer" picks that year to even things out.  But again, it would appear that the cavalry is coming up over the hill.  Let's hope so.

I agree entirely with 2 exceptions.  First, I think we would really only need half (at most) of that group of A-ball players to "work out" (i.e. be productive for the Pirates or used acquire someone that is productive for the Pirates).  Some will inevitably not make it to the big leagues or fail once they get there, that is why having large numbers of above average prospects is crucial for an organization like the Pirates.

And second, I think the depth is there above A-ball.  Besides Cole and Taillon, you have Irwin, McPherson, Locke, Wilson, and Cumpton that have come up through the Pirates organization, Oliver and Pimental acquired via trade, and Kingham, who has a chance to bump up to AA quickly with a strong start in Bradenton.  So while most of those guys profile as having an upside as a number 3 starter or lower, that is all you really need with Cole and Taillon (and free-agents/trade acquisitions) leading the rotation in the next few years.
The only thing I'd like to clarify in this is the word "depth".  Do you mean depth as in, if Burnett gets hurt, any of these guys can step in and give us 85% of what Burnett would... or as in, if Burnett gets hurt, we have 6 other guys we can call up to give a chance to fill the role and we don't have to worry about paying a $2M journeyman starter $7M to come and bail us out?  If its the former, I whole-heartedly disagree with you... if it's the latter, I completely agree with you.

To me, there's depth... and then there's DEPTH.  DEPTH is what the Packers have at WR.  Donald Driver gets hurt... that's ok, we have Jordy Nelson.  Oh, Jennings is hurt... that's ok, we have James Jones.  Uh-oh, Nelson is hurt... that's ok, we have Randall Cobb.  Then, there's depth - like what the Buccaneers have.  Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams are a really good pair... but if either of them got hurt and Tiquan Underwood had to start, it just wouldn't be pretty.

I think we have plenty of guys that could give us close to 85% of what Burnett does, which would be an ERA of over 4.00 (if Burnett duplicates last season).  You can't expect your "depth" to come in and pitch as well as your best starting pitcher, that is unrealistic.  You expect them to be able to come in and "hold the fort" so to speak.  However, I think guys like Locke, Karstens, McPherson, Irwin, Cole, Oliver, and possibly Sanchez could come in and duplicate every guy in our rotation except for Burnett and Rodriguez. 

That to me is the definition of depth, which the Pirates have a ton of in the starting pitching department.  Where the Pirates are lacking is an ace at the front of the rotation, which is where Cole and Taillon in a couple years factoring in, aces don't grow on trees and are pretty rare.
One-dimensionally (ERA), yes, I think all those prospects could come up and have an approximately 4.50.  But, will they be as efficient?  Durable (as in, can they routinely get into the 7th inning)?  Consistent?  No, I don't think any can... and that's if we only lose Burnett for a stretch.  What if it's longer?  What if it's Wandy as well?  Those guys are 27 any more.  It is absolutely possible we lose 7-10 starts from both of them.

I don't need the Pirates to have a rotation like SF or Philly, but I'd be ok with a bunch of 2's and 3's to be our starting 5... followed by some 3's and 4's waiting in the wings.  That's DEPTH.  What we have now is where I believe we are in agreement... we have depth where if anyone other than AJ and Wandy miss time we can replace them with a competant equal.  That being said, it's a bunch of 4's and 5's.  To me, that's not depth to be throwing parties for, like some are... but it's enough to get by and be interested in because the bulk of them are kids that possibly in the future won't be 4's or 5's.

Now, you mentioned Cole and Taillon, the future is a different story.  Aces are great to have and no, they don't grow on trees, but for this year I'm hoping that the kids prove themselves to be better than backend rotation/situational fillers/long relievers.  In the future, maybe we have a couple 1's, a few more 2's, and a bunch of 3's... but right now and this year, we have a pair of 2's and a bunch of 4's and 5's.
#fringeprospect
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Posted: 02/06/2013 11:43 AM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 


... we have depth where if anyone other than AJ and Wandy miss time we can replace them with a competant equal. That being said, it's a bunch of 4's and 5's. To me, that's not depth to be throwing parties for, like some are... but it's enough to get by and be interested in because the bulk of them are kids that possibly in the future won't be 4's or 5's.

Now, you mentioned Cole and Taillon, the future is a different story. Aces are great to have and no, they don't grow on trees, but for this year I'm hoping that the kids prove themselves to be better than backend rotation/situational fillers/long relievers. In the future, maybe we have a couple 1's, a few more 2's, and a bunch of 3's... but right now and this year, we have a pair of 2's and a bunch of 4's and 5's.


This is my view, as well.  Things could all work out okay as long as Cole and Taillon become our new 1 and 2 for at least a handful of seasons.  But if either or both get hurt for any length of time, there just aren't any comparable prospects anywhere else in the system.  As TB says, there are a number of pitchers who will probably be competent 4's and 5's.  But you're not going anywhere with a rotation made up of guys like that.  Perhaps a McPherson or a Locke or (most likely in my view) Wilson take the next step up.  Sometimes young players exceed expectations.  But right now, it doesn't look like the Pirates have a bunch of overwhelming arms ready to succeed the likes of Burnett and Wandy, or ready to step in if Cole and Taillon get hurt or flame out.  Thus my contention that while the system is unquestionably improved, it is nowhere near where it needs to be if the Pirates are truly going to compete. 

Last edited 02/06/2013 11:45 AM by williamjpellas

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Posted: 02/06/2013 12:56 PM

Re: Keith Law's farm system ranks 



williamjpellas wrote: ... we have depth where if anyone other than AJ and Wandy miss time we can replace them with a competant equal. That being said, it's a bunch of 4's and 5's. To me, that's not depth to be throwing parties for, like some are... but it's enough to get by and be interested in because the bulk of them are kids that possibly in the future won't be 4's or 5's.

Now, you mentioned Cole and Taillon, the future is a different story. Aces are great to have and no, they don't grow on trees, but for this year I'm hoping that the kids prove themselves to be better than backend rotation/situational fillers/long relievers. In the future, maybe we have a couple 1's, a few more 2's, and a bunch of 3's... but right now and this year, we have a pair of 2's and a bunch of 4's and 5's.


This is my view, as well.  Things could all work out okay as long as Cole and Taillon become our new 1 and 2 for at least a handful of seasons.  But if either or both get hurt for any length of time, there just aren't any comparable prospects anywhere else in the system.  As TB says, there are a number of pitchers who will probably be competent 4's and 5's.  But you're not going anywhere with a rotation made up of guys like that.  Perhaps a McPherson or a Locke or (most likely in my view) Wilson take the next step up.  Sometimes young players exceed expectations.  But right now, it doesn't look like the Pirates have a bunch of overwhelming arms ready to succeed the likes of Burnett and Wandy, or ready to step in if Cole and Taillon get hurt or flame out.  Thus my contention that while the system is unquestionably improved, it is nowhere near where it needs to be if the Pirates are truly going to compete. 

Then what do you consider Kingham, Heredia, Glasnow, and Holmes?  They all have front of the rotation potential.  That is why you use guys like Burnett, Rodriguez, etc. for Cole and Taillon's first couple seasons while they get established.  Then, when you feel comfortable that Cole and Taillon can lead the rotation the next wave of prospects will be knocking on the door.  IMO the Pirates have it set up perfect, By the time Cole/Taillon are established (at least somewhat) Kingham will be breaking into the big leagues and Glasnow/Heredia/Holmes will all be getting pretty close. 

There aren't any teams in baseball that can lose there best two starters for a long stretch and keep right on winning, it doesn't work like that unless a rookie comes up and exceeds expectations.  So the Pirates aren't any different in that regard, they can't afford to lose both Burnett and Rodriguez for a long stretch simultaneously.   

And back to the post before William's, I don't know if there is a rotation in baseball that has a couple aces and a few number 2 starters as you hint at having eventually, that is extremely unrealistic lol.  The only rotation that comes close to that is the Giants, they have 2 legit aces, and too legit #2 starters, but they still have Zito at the back end.  And that is the best rotation in baseball.
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