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Get excited: Top Pirates prospect Gregory Polanco is making his debut tonight

Get pumped: Polanco to make debut

The Pirates signed Gregory Polanco in 2009 -- back when the world was a different place. Jimmy Fallon was starting up a new late night talk show, people were obsessed with Beyonce and the Dodgers had a talented but eccentric outfielder hitting third in the lineup.

But now, it's 2014. And while Polanco was just 17 when he signed with the Pirates as a raw international amateur, he's now 22 and one of the top prospects in the game.

Oh, and he's making his big league debut tonight.

So, Pirates fans, in honor of his ascension to the Majors, we thought we'd give you a little introduction.

Here's how describes Polanco's game:

Polanco has five-tool potential. He is an aggressive hitter, but doesn't strike out a ton and has become more willing to take a walk. His swing does have a tendency to get long, a problem compounded by his lanky frame. Still, with his hands and bat speed, he has the potential to be a special hitter with above-average power.

Polanco has plus speed and covers ground well in the outfield. He is a center fielder now, but he has a strong arm and could slide over to right field if necessary. That could be his spot in PNC Park before too long.

Let's take a closer look at those five tools, shall we?

Hitting for average:

Through 62 games in Triple-A this season, Polanco managed to hit for a .347 average -- tops in the International League among players playing at least 50 games. Sure, we could show you a few singles, but where's the excitement in that? He's also tied for the league lead in triples, with five:

Hitting for power:

But, as we all know, chicks dig the long ball, and Polanco is no slouch in that regard. Here he is taking David Phelps deep in Spring Training this year:



Of course, you don't get a .405 OBP without a little extra talent beyond hitting, and when it comes to speed on the basepaths, Polanco is top-notch. Check him out here, bringing home the tying run on an infield hit:


If you're gonna play alongside reigning NL MVP Andrew McCutchen, you're gonna have to hold your own in the outfield. Thankfully, Polanco brings an excellent glove to PNC Park:

Arm strength:

Because the baddest dude in the league plays in center field, it's likely that Polanco will fit in elsewhere in the outfield -- probably in right, in which case his stellar arm will come in handy quite a bit:

Tweet game:

OK, so this one isn't actually on the scouting report, but that doesn't mean he's any less adept at it. First of all, Polanco's screenname is @El_Coffee which is as enigmatic as it is delightful.

Secondly, his emoji game is top notch:

And lastly, Pirates fans, he's just as excited to meet you as you are to see him:

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