MATTHEW CURRY
FIRST BASEMAN
  Born: July 27, 1988
Height: 6′ 1″
Weight: 215
Bats: Left
Throws: Right
Drafted: 16th Round, 477th Overall, 2010
How Acquired: Draft
College: Texas Christian University
Agent: N/A

WTM’S PIRATE PLAYER PROFILES

The Pirates previously drafted Curry in the 37th round in 2008, after he hit 60 doubles and 30 HRs in two years of JC ball at Howard College in Texas.  He went on Texas Christian and had a major power spike in his second year there, after a mediocre junior season.  He also drew a boatload of walks.  He’s a patient hitter who works the count and looks for pitches to drive.  He’s not good defensively and doesn’t run well, so his bat will have to carry him.

2010
A-:  299/421/477, 197 AB, 14 2B, 7 HR, 39 BB, 47 K, 7-12 SB

Signed shortly after finishing play in the College World Series and took over at first for State College.  He got off to a blazing start, with an OPS of 1.004 in July, but tailed off after that.  He drew a lot of walks, but he also fanned in a quarter of his ABs.  For some reason, Curry attempted to steal a lot although he isn’t fast and didn’t have a good SB percentage.  He hit LHPs a little better than RHPs.

2011
A:  361/477/671, 155 AB, 15 2B, 3 3B, 9 HR, 35 BB, 29 K, 6-8 SB
AA:  242/320/374, 302 AB, 16 2B, 3 3B, 6 HR, 33 BB, 90 K, 1-2, SB

The Pirates sent Curry to West Virginia because Aaron Baker was slated for Bradenton and they wanted both to play first every day, to work on their defensive skills.  Curry was obviously too advanced for the SAL and posted a 1.148 OPS, with more walks than Ks.  With Baker slumping at that point, the team moved Curry up to AA.  He figured to struggle initially, but as a college draftee whose entire game is his bat, he should have been able to adjust eventually.  As it turned out, Curry struggled in June (.657 OPS), started hitting well in July (.847), but then collapsed the rest of the way (.594 in August, .405 in September).  He maintained a decent walk rate and continued to try to work the count, but he struggled to make contact, fanning in nearly a third of his ABs.  In August and September his K rate rose to 38%.  He also didn’t show the power he’ll need, as a player who’s limited to first, with just six HRs in 87 games.

2012
AA:  285/352/480, 396 AB, 34 2B, 5 3B, 11 HR, 44 BB, 107 K, 4-8 SB
AAA:  400/500/400, 5 AB, 1 BB, 1 K, 0-1 SB

Curry had a solid season for Altoona, but never managed to stay hot for any extended period.  He didn’t hit his first HR until May and had only 11 for the year.  Since he played half the season at age 24, it can’t be assumed some of his doubles will turn into HRs, so it’s not clear he’ll have the power needed for a player who’s limited to first.  He had a large home/road split, posting a .953 OPS at home and .706 on the road, despite the fact that Altoona plays in a pitcher’s park.  He had a moderate platoon split, hitting 282/328/419 against LHPs and 287/362/505 against RHPs.  His plate discipline continued to be weaker than it had been in low A.  He tries to pull the ball most of the time, which leaves him vulnerable to breaking balls.  The Pirates moved Curry up to AAA at the end of the season.

2013
R:  111/200/111, 1 BB, 2 K
AA:  248/286/400, 105 AB, 4 2B, 4 HR, 5 BB, 35 K, 2-2 SB

The 2013 season was a difficult one for Curry.  He originally appeared to be headed to AAA, but the Pirates signed a number of veteran minor league corner players in the off-season and Curry went back to AA.  He had a mediocre April with remarkably bad plate discipline, then went out in early May for hamate surgery.  He made several rehab appearances in the GCL, the last one in early July, but must have aggravated the injury because he didn’t play anywhere after that.  When he did play in AA, it was mostly at first.  With Alex Dickerson and Andrew Lambo both at Altoona, though, the Pirates played Curry a little in left, which is not a place he should be much.

Curry was eligible for the Rule 5 draft, but wasn’t added to the roster or selected.  Even with Alex Dickerson gone, the Pirates have loaded up on left-handed firstbase options, and they’re promoting Stetson Allie to play the position for Altoona.  Curry wasn’t on any roster to open the season and I don’t know whether he’s healthy, but he’s facing a serious crunch for playing time at first in AAA or AA.

STATS
Baseball Reference–Minors
Fangraphs
MiLB.com

NCAA
BA
OBP
SA
AB
2B
3B
HR
BB
K
SB
CS
2009
.315
.421
.444
162
10
1
3
27
40
2
2
2010
.353
.478
.725
218
26
2
17
54
41
12
5
CONTRACT INFORMATION
2014: Minor League Contract
PLAYER INFORMATION
Signing Bonus: N/A
MiLB Debut: 2010
MLB Debut: N/A
MiLB FA Eligible: 2016
MLB FA Eligible: N/A
Rule 5 Eligible: 2013
Added to 40-Man: N/A
Options Remaining: 3
MLB Service Time: 0.000
TRANSACTIONS
June 6, 2008: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 37th round, 1104th overall pick.
June 8, 2010: Drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 16th round, 477th overall pick; signed on June 28.