First Pitch: The Prospect Guide Returns to Print With Three Special Variant Covers

The 2020 Prospect Guide returns to print for our tenth anniversary! This year we are releasing three variant covers, featuring Mitch Keller, Ke’Bryan Hayes, and Oneil Cruz. Scroll down for more information, or go to our shop page to order these extremely limited items!

Time is truly a flat circle.

Ten years ago, around this time, I was putting together a project. It was a book that would feature every single prospect in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ system.

The idea was that this book would give Pirates Prospects a boost in revenue, allowing it to be a full-time job for me, and allowing me to grow the site.

I was writing it all while working the Census to make extra money, again, so that I could run this site and eventually turn it into a job.

That original book sold about 200 copies — not enough to make things full time, but definitely enough to keep things progressing. Pittsburgh Baseball Network wouldn’t be around today without that book in 2011.

Now here we are, ten years later. My original plan was to work the Census again this year, providing some additional revenue to pour into the site while I was building PBN. That fell through when COVID-19 hit. Fortunately, we’ve had enough support on this site to launch PBN and stay in business through all of this.

I’d like to grow Pittsburgh Baseball Network, getting the site ready for full coverage by the time baseball returns in the minors down through high school. I’d also like to make sure that we stay in business, and that John Dreker and I have jobs when that time comes.

That brings us to the release of the 2020 Prospect Guide. Ten years ago I was optimistic that this book would lead to great things for Pirates Prospects. Over the years it has fueled our coverage, and then supplemented the coverage when we moved to a subscription site.

We moved away from physical books in the last few years. Let’s be honest though: We’re all staring at screens all day long, especially in the age of COVID and working from home. None of us wants to take a break to stare at another screen to read a book. We want physical products so that we feel like we’re not spending our whole life online, or so that we can have something to read in the bathroom when our phone is dead.

We’re now onto our tenth edition of the guide, and to celebrate the anniversary, we’re going back to physical books!

We’re releasing a limited edition Prospect Guide, along with three very limited variant cover editions featuring Mitch Keller, Ke’Bryan Hayes, and Oneil Cruz. Go to our shop page to order, or read on below for more information.

We’ve also got merchandise and bundled deals, featuring a special edition Pirates Prospects shirt, a limited edition Pirates Prospects beer glass, and baseball cards!

The 2020 Guide will feature our top 50 prospects as of September 1st, meaning that the book will include Nick Gonzales and any players acquired at the trade deadline. The book is running at around 180 pages right now.

Each physical copy purchased will come with one download of the digital copy!

As for those special edition covers, let’s take a look:

We’ve got individual bundles available for each variant, featuring a book, shirt, glass, and the first Pirates Bowman baseball card of that player. We also have a Top Prospect bundle that includes all four variant covers, the shirt, the glass, and all three player cards. Each bundle gets you 10% off the overall price.

The beer glass is something we’re going to be trying on this site, releasing special one-off glass designs. They’ll only be printed once, and will be limited to about 300 glasses. In the future, I want to work with local artists in Pittsburgh for the limited glass designs, allowing us to support Pittsburgh the way Pittsburgh has supported us, while providing a new glass design each month.

The 2020 Guide glass features the special edition Pirates Prospects logo on the front, with the No Quarter skull in the middle. On the back you’ll find the original Pirates Prospects logo.

All of the products will be shipped in September, once we receive the item from the publisher and distributors. Don’t wait to order, as these are all limited.

Go to our shop page to order your copy today!



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