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ST. LOUIS -- Jameson Taillon is catching up to Gerrit Cole, who was drafted a year later but was the first of the Pirates' tandem of blue-chip pitching prospects to advance to Double-A.
Now Taillon is ready to retrace Cole's footsteps from Bradenton to Altoona. The Pirates on Friday gave the bump to the 6-foot-6 right-hander, and Taillon is scheduled to make his Double-A debut on Tuesday.
"Jameson continued to solidify his foundation -- delivery, pitch development, and as a pro," said Pittsburgh assistant general manager Kyle Stark. "We feel like he is now ready for the challenges of the upper levels, where the focus is more on attacking hitters and using his stuff. Continued pitch development will be a part of this, as will the mentality of pitching versus more advanced hitters."
The Bucs are fine with the move even though Taillon has already thrown 32 more innings than the 92 2/3 he did last year as a professional rookie with Class A West Virginia.
The overall No. 2 selection in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft had an inconsistent season with the Marauders which, frankly, is viewed positively as part of the education.
Taillon had an ERA of 1.51 for his first 36 2/3 innings, let that slide to 8.13 across the next 31 innings, and rebounded from that to earn the promotion with a mark of 2.98 over his final 57 1/3 frames.
Taillon is ranked No. 3 on MLB.com's Top 100 and is the Bucs' top prospect.