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Top three prospects to watch in Pirates Spring Training

There is an abundance of Minor League talent for the Pittsburgh Pirates, but which three standout the most?

Pittsburgh Pirates Photo Day
Jared Jones is one of the top prospects for Pittsburgh.
Photo by Mike Carlson/MLB Photos via Getty Images

With Spring Training just around the corner, the Pittsburgh Pirates have a lot to be excited about. The team has made some near ambitious moves in the offseason to add more players to what was a better but not great team in 2023. With that comes the buzz surrounding some of the squad’s Minor League prospects, as they will undoubtedly be making headlines during Spring Ball. While the team possesses one of the deepest farm systems in baseball, there are three sure fire prospects every fan will want to pay attention to down in Bradenton.

Paul Skenes

The top-ranked prospect in Pittsburgh’s system is right handed pitcher Paul Skenes, who coming off of a College World-Series victory with LSU, was selected first overall by the Pirates in 2023. With that pick came just a small sample size of what Skenes can do in the pro ranks. Even with that limited action, the fanfare was certainly there, as the former LSU Tiger was being described as one of the best pitching prospects in over a decade.

2023 saw Skenes pitch in just 6.2 innings, but his highly-rated fastball was on display and was for the most part dominant from the mound. Given his own status as a player and his girlfriend’s status as the highest paid college athlete, there will be plenty of clamoring to see Skenes in action come Spring.

Termarr Johnson

Hoping to have a breakout 2024 season is the former first rounder and top second base prospect in baseball, Termarr Johnson, who is also a must-see for Spring Training. In a position that is in a transition period, seeing the future at second base is going to be a treat, as Johnson has the highest ceiling of any other player at the position.

Johnson was supposed to be a big draw in last season’s Spring League, but was dismissed after a brief stint with the Pirates after suffering an injury and was shut down for the rest of the competition. Now fully healthy and coming off the heels of a great 2023, Johnson is set to be a marquee player for Pittsburgh in the Grapefruit League, and will be particularly fun to watch in the Spring Breakout game.

Jared Jones

Rounding out the top players we look forward to seeing is right-handed pitcher Jared Jones. At this point, Jones is likely at the doorstep of a chance to play in the Majors, as he finished last year with Triple-A Indianapolis. With that being said, Jones needs more experience at that level, so he should be a focal point for the team in Spring Training as he prepares for what should be a significant push to get ready for play in Pittsburgh.

There are so many promising players in Pittsburgh’s Minor League system that it is hard to pick just three, but I do believe Johnson, Jones and Skenes have the best chance at making an impact in Spring Training, and they should certainly be high on people’s lists for who to pay attention to.