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Pittsburgh Pirates Draft Review

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Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen, drafted in the first round in 2005. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen, drafted in the first round in 2005. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
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Continuing with the NL Central, here are the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pittsburgh Pirates Draft Review
1) Jameson Taillon, RHP, Texas HS: Best high school pitcher in the draft by far; outstanding stuff and very strong command for his age. Can't complain about this one.

2) Stetson Allie, RHP, Ohio HS: Not as refined as Taillon, but throws even harder, hitting 100 MPH. He'll need development work and won't be cheap to sign, but Pirates fans should be very happy.

3) Mel Rojas Jr, OF, Wabash Valley CC: Bloodline player with excellent raw tools including blazing speed, could have gone in the first round if he was more refined.

4) Nick Kingham, RHP, Nevada HS: Low-90s fastball, projectable, won't be cheap to get away from Oregon, but a strong upside pick in the fourth round.

5) Tyler Waldron, RHP, Oregon State University: An erratic college pitcher with a live arm but very mixed performance record. Could be good, a bust, or anything in between.

6) Jason Hursh, RHP, Texas HS: Prep right-hander with low-90s heat, erratic-but-promising breaking stuff. Oklahoma State scholarship won't be cheap to buy out.

7) Austin Kubitza, RHP, Texas HS: Another prep with low-90s heat, improving slider, and a college scholarship to Rice.

8) Dace Kime, RHP, Ohio HS: Outstanding curveball and can hit 90, overshadowed by Allie in Ohio high school ranks, but has promise. Another guy with a college commitment (Louisville) that will have to be dealt with.

9) Brandon Cumpton, RHP, Georgia Tech: Hits 90, but secondary stuff needs a lot of work and he was not consistently successful in college. Might do better against wooden bats.

10) Zach Weiss, RHP, California HS: Low-90s fastball, good curveball, and a UCLA commitment.

FOUR OTHERS OF NOTE: 13-Chris Kirsch, LHP, Pennsylvania HS; 15-Drew Maggi, SS, Arizona State; 17-Ryan Hafner, RHP, Missouri HS; 24-Justin Howard, 1B, University of New Mexico.

COMMENT: High school pitching is the obvious theme here. They got the two best power arms on the board with Taillon and Allie. Kingham, Hursch, Kubitza, Kime, Weiss, and Hafner all have very strong potential, IF they can sign them. The Pirates put a lot of money into similar guys like Zach Von Rosenberg and Colton Cain last year, and I imagine they will do the same in 2010, doing everything they can to sign these arms to above-slot bonuses. It won't be cheap, but it would add a lot of pitching to the system. Rojas provides some raw tools upside in the outfield. This is a bold draft that could pay great dividends, or blow up in their face. Any doubt that Pirates fans have about the team's financial commitment to player development should be dispelled by this class.