Top 10 Pirates Prospects Update: Some Good Pitching, Brannigan Leads Hitters (2024)

This is one in a weekly update on the top 10 Pittsburgh Pirates prospects.

Welcome back to another installment of updates for the top 10 Pittsburgh Pirates prospects.

Overall, it’s been more of the same from the Pirates’ top pitching prospects. Paul Skenes and Jared Jones have continued their excellent starts to the season.

On the position-player front, Jack Brannigan has far and away been the best performer in the top 10 while the other three have struggled.

Full updates on the top 10:

1. RHP Paul Skenes (Triple-A Indianapolis)

  • Weekly stats: 0-0, 2.08 ERA, 4.1 innings, two runs (one earned) five hits, one walk, seven strikeouts, one appearances/one start
  • 2024 stats: 0-0, 0.53 ERA, 17 innings, two runs (one earned), 10 hits, five walks, 37 strikeouts, five appearances/five starts

Skenes was scored upon for the first time this season but he turned in another strong outing and set a career-high in innings. It seems like it’s only a matter of time until the top Pirates prospect reaches the big stage.

2. INF Termarr Johnson (High-A Greensboro)

  • Weekly stats: .105/.261/.263, 2 for 19, one home run, one RBI, one steal, five games
  • 2024 stats: .175/.369/.270, 11 for 63, one double, one triple, one home run, eight RBIs, three steals, 19 games

Johnson is still drawing his share of walks and slugged his first home run of the year on Sunday but he remains in a slump to start the season. A big reason for his early-season struggles? He’s striking out in nearly 30% of his plate appearances.

3. RHP Jared Jones (Pittsburgh Pirates)

  • Weekly stats: 1-1, 3.27 ERA, 11 innings, four runs, 10 hits, three walks, 10 strikeouts, two appearances/two starts
  • 2024 stats: 2-3, 3.18 ERA, 34 innings, 12 runs, 26 hits, five walks, 42 strikeouts, six appearances/six starts

Jones’ first start of the week against the Brewers was another really good one. However, he had his poorest showing to date against the Giants on Sunday. In the latter, Jones allowed three runs in five innings and only struck out three. He’s still been everything the Pirates could have hoped for so far.

4. LHP Anthony Solometo (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: 0-0, 10.81 ERA, 3.1 innings, four runs, three hits, one walk, three strikeouts, one appearance/one start
  • 2024 stats: 0-1, 6.23 ERA, 13 innings, nine runs, 12 hits, eight walks, nine strikeouts, four appearances/four starts.

It’s been a struggle for Solometo in the early going and he had another disappointing outing in his latest start. Walks have plagued Solometo so far, but he only issued one free pass in his lone start of the week.

5. RHP Bubba Chandler (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: 0-0, 27.00 ERA, 0.2 innings, two runs, no hits, two walks, one strikeout, one appearance/one start
  • 2024 stats: 1-1, 4.15 ERA, 13 innings, six runs, 10 hits, eight walks, 16 strikeouts, four appearances/four starts.

Pitch count got the better of Chandler and knocked him out of his start before he could escape the first inning. Outside of that, it’s been an encouraging start for one of the top Pirates prospects.

6. RHP Thomas Harrington (Double-A Altoona)

  • HAS YET TO PITCH THIS SEASON (7-DAY IL – RIGHT SHOULDER)

Harrington still has yet to make his season debut as he battles a shoulder injury.

7. RHP Braxton Ashcraft (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: 0-1, 7.20 ERA, five innings, four runs, six hits, one walk, five strikeouts, four appearances/three starts
  • 2024 stats: 0-1, 6.91 ERA, 14.1 innings, 11 runs, 19 hits, two walks, 12 strikeouts, four appearances/three starts

Home runs have really been an issue for Ashcraft so far this season and he allowed another one in his last start. Opponents are hitting .311 against him on the year.

8. INF Mitch Jebb (High-A Greensboro)

  • Weekly stats: .263/.364/.316, 5 for 19, one double, three RBIs, three steals, five games
  • 2024 stats: .229/.308/.243, 16 for 70, one double, seven RBIs, four walks, four steals, 17 games

Jebb started to show signs of breaking out of the slump he’s been mired in to begin his first full professional season. Though he’s hardly shown any power, he has showed off his speed.

9. INF Tsung-Che Cheng (Double-A Altoona)

  • Weekly stats: .063/.318/.063, 1 for 16, one RBI
  • 2024 stats: .161/.347/.214, 9 for 56, one home run, five RBIs, four steals, 16 games

At least Cheng is getting on base because he has not been able to get the bat going up to this point. It’s unusual to see from the usually-steady infield prospect.

10. INF Jack Brannigan (High-A Greensboro)

  • Weekly stats: .222/.276/.593, 6 for 27, one double, three home runs, four RBIs, one steal, six games
  • 2024 stats: .246/.380/.477, 16 for 65, three doubles, four home runs, eight RBIs, three steals, 17 games

Of all the position-player prospects in the Pirates’ top 10, Brannigan has been by far the most successful this season. He went on a power surge this past week and belted three homers. Combine that with his ability to steal bases and Brannigan looks intriguing.

Top 10 Pirates Prospects Update: Some Good Pitching, Brannigan Leads Hitters (2024)
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