December 6, 2007

Nothing but Good News, Rule V

Well, there is always a bright light to look for. Then the is the proverbial, pray it's not an oncoming train.

We, as fans of the Pittsburgh Pirates, must give Huntington some major praise on the Rule V draft. Unlike his predecessor ( yes, Dave, I am speaking of you and the famous Rule V debacle) Mr. Huntington did not lose a player in the MLB portion of the draft.

A couple possible reasons:
First, the Pirates protected everyone who should have been protected.
Two, DL left no one worth protecting.

Huntington, and the 30 or so front office monkeys with him, did a fine job in this draft. Let's review:
Jose "Can you see" Castillo, adios. In the long run, this is best for everyone involved, particularly the team that picks him up and whips him into shape.

Hello to the newest member of the pen, Evan Meek. A nice pickup, but we should have gotten this Leek kid mentioned in the Post Gazette:

Meek, 24, is a hard-throwing right-hander -- capable of regularly hitting 95 mph -- who had a 4.30 ERA in 67 appearances last season for Montgomery, the Tampa Bay Rays' Class AAA affiliate. He struck out 69 and walked 34 in 67 innings.

"Oh, I am so excited," Leek said from his home in Washington state. "I mean, come on, man, I didn't sleep all night. This is such a great chance for me, and I can't wait to get to Pittsburgh."

The poor kid couldn't sleep knowing his fate was coming to the Pirates.

Hello to minor league acquisitions Josh Hill (AAA portion of the draft), Mauricio Mendez (AAA), Corey Hamman (AAA) and Rafael Cruz (AA).

Of the four minor league pitchers, the one who intrigues me is Mendez. The kid is OLD for GCL action (22), but he is 6'6" 200lbs. If the pitching coaches can get him to pitch tall, he could add a few MPH and get a better downward plane on his pitches. From the people I have spoken with who have seen him pitch, he pitches well, but pitches small.

Here are some links on Mendez:

" Scouting Report: Big righty with low 90s fastball with good movement and average breaking pitches. 3/4 arm slot. Above average control."


" Mauricio Mendez: Mendez pitched mostly out of the pen, going 36 innings in 15 appearances. Mendez was excellent in that role, putting up a record of 2-1 with a 1.50 ERA, walking 5 and striking out 28. Only player with significant time to put up a below 1 WHIP (0.97 to be exact)."
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