Zack Von Rosenberg entered this season in some people’s Top 10 prospect lists. He was drafted in the 6th round of the 2009 draft and was pried away from his commitment to LSU with a $1.2 million bonus. ZVR’s run into a road block this year, though, and his prospect status has temporarily taken a hit. When I saw him warm up, though, to make his first ever bullpen appearance of his career, I can’t say I wasn’t excited to see him. Here’s a breakdown of Von Rosenberg’s 2 1/3 innings of relief:
Von Rosenberg entered the game in the 4th inning in a pretty tough spot. Jameson Taillon had just come out of the game with 2 outs and the bases loaded. He would face off against last season’s 8th overall pick in Delino DeShields, Jr and as you will see in this video, Von Rosenberg struck out DeShields to strand the bases loaded.
Von Rosenberg started off great in the 5th inning, too as he got Enrique Hernandez to ground out and Adam Bailey to strike out looking. However, he would leave a fastball out over the plate to Telvin Nash, who hit it a long way over the left center field fence. ZVR would respond with a strikeout of Michael Kvasnicka for the 3rd out. Here’s all 4 at-bats:
ZVR would go one more inning as he went out for the 6th. After allowing a lead off single to Emilio King, he would get Tyler Burnett to fly out to right field. King would then get caught stealing 2nd base on what looked like a failed hit and run attempt. Ben Orloff then flew out to right field for out number 3. Here’s every at-bat but the King single. I didn’t get that one, unfortunately, I was sitting on the aisle, and someone decided they wanted something as soon as the inning started…oh well…
I was not at all impressed with Von Rosenberg’s fastball. It sat mostly in the 88-89 range, occasionally touching 90, which is in-line with scouting reports that I have seen. The good news is he is still just 20 years old and his frame allows him to hopefully add some velocity in the future. His breaking ball looked to be a plus-pitch. One of his big problems this year seems to be the long ball, which would make you believe he simply isn’t locating his pitches. Hopefully he can get things together as he is one of many young pitchers the Pirates have in their system with a ton of upside.