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Pirates promote Brandon Waddell to Altoona

Pirates Prospects is reporting (sub. req'd) that the Pirates have promoted left-handed pitching prospect Brandon Waddell to Altoona and that he'll start for the Curve on Wednesday.  They selected Waddell in the fifth round out of the University of Virginia just last year; he won't turn 22 until June 3.  Waddell saw only limited duty last year, as he signed late because he was busy starring in UVa's title run in the College World Series.  Given his experience level, the Pirates sent Waddell directly to Bradenton in high A this year, skipping him over low A.

This year, Waddell has consistently dominated through five starts, allowing just 13 hits and two walks in 29 innings, with 26 strikeouts.  His ERA is 0.93.  He's following roughly the same path as Steven Brault, a similar lefty who won an early promotion from Bradenton to Altoona last year.  Brault actually struggled in his first few starts for Bradenton and wasn't promoted until he'd made 13.  Waddell will make a quicker transition.

To replace Waddell in the Bradenton rotation, the Pirates will activate lefty Stephen Tarpley, who's been held back due to an oblique issue.  Tarpley, of course, came to the Pirates with Brault from Baltimore for Travis Snider.