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Pittsburgh Pirates’ Prospect Profile: Austin Meadows

January 29th, 2014 at 5:40 PM
By Allan Smith

Recently rated the No. 45 prospect in all of baseball by MLB.com, Austin Meadows is one of the most talented outfielders in the Pittsburgh Pirates' system at the young age of 18.

Meadows, who was drafted with the 9th overall pick in the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft, hit .316 with a .424 OBP and a .977 OPS splitting time between the Pirates' affiliates in the Gulf Coast and New York-Penn League. Of his 56 hits, 23 went for extra bases, and he walked nearly as much as he struck out.

'PNC Park' photo (c) 2006, Navin75 - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

An Atlanta native, Meadows graduated Grayson High School in Loganville, GA in 2013. He bats and throws left-handed, and measures up at 6-foot-3, 200 lbs. Even though he was competing against lower-level professional talent, Meadows displayed plenty of power potential and should look to start next season at some level of Class-A ball. If Meadows shows enough during spring training, he may be able to skip a team and join the High-A squad in Bradenton.

With an outfield that will feature Andrew McCutchen, Starling Marte and Gregory Polanco within the upcoming year, many don't see where Meadows will eventually fit in. However, one needs a short lesson in Pirates history to realize the outfield won't look as such three or four years down the line when Meadows is set to break in to the major leagues.

Meadows should be looking to break in with the Pirates during the 2017 or 2018 season, as he certainly won't be rushed with McCutchen under contract and Marte and Polanco just beginning to reach arbitration. But, as baseball economics have detemined before, the Pirates will most likely not be able to keep all three, thus opening the spot for Meadows.

If the first round pick progresses as projected, the outfield won't lose a beat when Meadows joins to replace one of the three studs.

Tags: Austin Meadows, Baseball, MLB, Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Pirates

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