JT Brubaker

From BR Bullpen

Jonathan Trey Brubaker

BR page

Biographical Information[edit]

JT Brubaker made it to the majors in 2020. His father Frank Brubaker played in the minors. [1]

He was 5-1 with a 2.03 ERA as a high school junior then improved to 4-1, 0.76 as a senior, hitting over .300 both years as well. [2] He struggled as a college freshman (0-7, 7.25) and improved to 3-5, 4.02 as a sophomore. [3] His junior year, he was 5-4 with a 3.63 ERA. [4] The Pittsburgh Pirates took him in the 6th round of the 2015 amateur draft, one pick after Steven Duggar; the scout was Trevor Haley. [5]

Brubaker had a fine pro debut with the West Virginia Black Bears at 6-4, 2.82 with only 12 walks in 73 1/3 IP, helping to a .94 WHIP, a better record than he had shown as a collegian. He tied for 4th in the New York-Penn League in wins and was 5th in ERA (between Luis Cedeno and Jordan Holloway. [6] He slumped in 2016 with the West Virginia Power (4-5, 3.48) and Bradenton Marauders (2-6, 5.32). Only Dario Agrazal had more losses among Buc farmhands but he tied Brandon Waddell for 4th in strikeouts (120).

The Ohio native was 7-6 with a 4.44 ERA for the 2017 Altoona Curve then won game 2 of the Eastern League finals (2 R in 6 IP) as Altoona swept the Trenton Thunder. [7] He fanned 109 in the regular season, tying Steven Brault, Taylor Hearn and Eduardo Vera for 6th in the Pirates chain. He was 0-1 with a 2.63 ERA for the Glendale Desert Dogs of the Arizona Fall League.

He had a strong 2018 for Altoona (2-2, 1.80, 35 K, 8 BB in 35 IP) and the Indianapolis Indians (8-4, 3.10). He led Pirates minor leaguers in ERA (2.81) [8] and was 7th in wins and second in strikeouts (131, 4 behind Mitch Keller). He was named the team's Minor League Pitcher of the Year. [9] He looked close to the majors as he started 2019 sharp back in AAA (2-1, 2.59) but a right forearm strain ended his season early. [10]

Brubaker made the Pirates' roster at the start of the 2020 season, thanks in part to the expanded rosters due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He debuted in the team's first win of the year, on July 26th, relieving Keller in the 6th with a 4-1 lead against the St. Louis Cardinals. He struck out Kolten Wong and Tommy Edman. Paul Goldschmidt singled but Bryan Reynolds gunned him down trying to make it a double. In the 7th, he gave up a double to Paul DeJong, whiffed Matt Carpenter, gave up a Yadier Molina single, struck out Dexter Fowler and got Tyler O'Neill on a fly. Michael Feliz took over in the 8th. After another fine relief outing (1 H, 0 R in 3 IP), he moved into the rotation for a spot when Keller was injured. In his first start on August 6th, he gave up a three-run dinger to the Minnesota Twins' Miguel Sano in the 1st, then pitched two shutout innings before fellow rookie Cody Ponce relieved him.


  1. 2020 Pirates Media Guide, pg. 63
  2. Akron bio
  3. ibid.
  4. Akron Beacon-Journal article
  5. 2020 Pirates Media Guide, pg. 63
  6. 2016 Baseball Almanac, pg. 387
  7. ibid.
  8. 2019 Baseball Almanac, pg. 260
  9. 2020 Pirates Media Guide, pg. 63
  10. ibid.

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