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Ranking The Pittsburgh Pirates’ Top 5 Pitching Prospects

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Ranking the Top 5 Pitching Prospects in the Pittsburgh Pirates' System

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have elite pitching in their farm system. With great talent at the top, as well as safe depth options throughout the system, the Pirates are set for many years when it comes to the starting rotation. Beginning as soon as 2015, the Pirates will start to see their next crop of elite arms joining the MLB rotation.

5. RHP Clay Holmes

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Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

5. RHP Clay Holmes

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Rob Foldy-USA TODAY Sports

Another Pirates prospect to undergo Tommy John surgery, being forced to miss the 2014 season, Clay Holmes has struggled with command early in his minor-league career. Holmes throws a low-90s fastball and a curveball. He was also working on a changeup before his season ended, and he will continue to do so when he is healthy again in 2015.

4. RHP Luis Heredia

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4. RHP Luis Heredia

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Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

The Pirates signed Luis Heredia when he was very young, at just 16 years old. For this reason, it seems like he's been around forever, at just 19 years old still. A major concern for Heredia is his control, however, he's a big right-hander and at 19 years old, command issues can still be fixed.

3. RHP Nick Kingham

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3. RHP Nick Kingham

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Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

With Taillon out for the year, Nick Kingham has the chance to possibly pass him in the development phase. Like many Pirates prospects, Kingham has a mid-90s fastball and a great curveball. The Pirates want all their pitchers to develop a great changeup, and Kingham is currently working on doing so. Kingham could reach Triple-A by the end of the 2014 season.

2. RHP Tyler Glasnow

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2. RHP Tyler Glasnow

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Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

A big right-handed pitcher, Tyler Glasnow, 6-foot-8, is a flamethrower with great strikeout rates. Glasnow has an upper-90s fastball and a wipeout curve. Glasnow put up 13.3 K/9 in 2013 and struck out an amazing 36.3 percent of the batters he faced.

1. RHP Jameson Taillon

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Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

1. RHP Jameson Taillon

Pittsburgh Pirates Jameson Taillon
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

At 6-foot-6, 245 pounsd, Jameson Taillon is what scouts look for in a front-end of the rotation starter. Taillon possesses a mid-to-high 90s fastball, a great, sharp curveball, and a developing changeup. He was expected to debut in the majors this season, but Tommy John surgery has caused a temporary change of plans.