After a tough collision last night between Starling Marte and Erik Gonzalez, the Pirates will be calling up their No. 5 and 8 prospects, Cole Tucker and Bryan Reynolds to fill the spots for Marte and Gonzalez who are likely heading to the Injured List.
I never like to see athletes getting hurt, especially ones that play for a team in Pittsburgh. However, this trip to the IL for Gonzalez might be one of the best things that happens to the Pirates this season. While the club will miss Marte in the lineup, Gonzalez’s departure from the team gives an opportunity to Tucker, who is one of the franchises most exciting prospects.
A former first round draft pick, Tucker has advanced his way through the minor league system thanks to his speed, decent hitting and most importantly…. EXCELLENT DEFENSE. The MLB and MiLB are very dumb so I cannot find any great videos of Tucker flashing the glove but take my word for it, the dude is solid.
I personally do not care if this guy hits .200 this season, I don’t want to ever see him in the minors again. If he is able to provide this club with the quality defense he has showcased throughout his entire professional career, he should be the team’s starting short stop. End of discussion.
The Pirates are built around pitching. That is how they are going to win games this year. Because of this, you need to limit as many mistakes in the field as possible because, you simply don’t have the offense to make up for them.
The Buccos have done a good job at scoring just enough to stay in games. Most of the time they’ve scored enough runs to win. Hopefully Tucker can help them with that as well. He was hitting well over .300 in Triple-A this year and is known to be a nightmare for opposing pitchers on the base paths.
Am I saying that the team should simply give up on Gonzalez all together? Absolutely not. If the guy was good enough to be Lindor’s backup, he should still get a chance to battle Tucker for the job when he is healthy. Even
if when he loses, they still should keep him around as a bench guy. I don’t think Gonzalez is as bad in the field as he has seemed to be in April.
However, I do think that Tucker is just a better all around player. If he shows any sign of that sentence being correct, he HAS to stay. The hitting will come. Even if Gonzalez out plays him, I would rather have him on the bench over Newman, Kramer or Pablo. All three seem like good dudes who deserve a shot, but it is Tucker Time baby!