Baseball America released their list of the best minor league tools in numerous categories, which are voted on by the minor league managers who have seen those players this season. The Pittsburgh Pirates had seven players get a total of nine mentions. Here’s the link to the article, and below is the list of Pirates players voted as the best in their league:
Altoona’s Oneil Cruz was voted as the best infield arm and most exciting prospect for the old Eastern League.
Bradenton reliever Oliver Mateo had an impressive double acknowledgement for his league, getting named as the pitcher with the best fastball and best breaking ball. He has 80 strikeouts in 36.2 innings, so I’d say it is well deserved.
Despite Mateo getting recognized for two of his pitches, former teammate Enmanuel Mejia was named as the league’s best relief prospect. Mejia has been promoted to Greensboro after not allowed a single earned run during his time in Bradenton. Mateo has some major control issues, which hold him back from the top spot.
Two third basemen were named as the best defensive players at their position. Greensboro’s Jared Triolo and Bradenton’s Dariel Lopez each got recognition for their defense.
Before he left Greensboro, Matt Fraizer apparently made quite an impression in the league, getting named as the best hitting prospect in the former South Atlantic League. He’s now at Altoona, where he has a .784 OPS in 29 games.
Bradenton picked up another mention when outfielder Daniel Rivero was named as having the best outfield arm in the league. This one is actually quite impressive because he hasn’t even spent half of the season in the league.