Which pitchers could the Pittsburgh Pirates face in a Wild Card game?

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Aug 7, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) delivers a pitch against the Los Angeles Dodgers during the second inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

There are so many different options in play, and it really is too early to be worrying about who the Pittsburgh Pirates could face in a potential Wild Card matchup. The NL Central is still very much in play, and there will most likely be plenty of shuffling around in that second Wild Card spot before the season ends. But why worry when the Pirates will more than likely have Gerrit Cole on the mound facing any of these pitchers?

Cole showed two years ago that he can be dominant in the postseason, as he holds a 2.45 ERA in two postseason starts. It’s also important to note that these are not the definitive selections for who these teams would send out in a Wild Card game. Most of these teams have deep rotations and multiple aces to choose from. The Cubs have Jon Lester behind Jake Arrieta, the Mets have Matt Harvey and Noah Syndergaard behind DeGrom, and the Dodgers have Clayton Kershaw right next to Zack Greinke. The Nats and Giants also have talented pitchers behind their ace that could be electric at any time in Matt Cain and Jordan Zimmermann, among others. All of these teams could also be battling for a playoff spot up until the last weekend, and could burn their aces before a Wild Card matchup, or they could use their ace in a one-game playoff before the Wild Card game in the event of a tie.

At the end of the day, if a team makes the postseason, they more than likely have at least one ace in their rotation. All of the players listed have phenomenal aces that headline their staffs, but if I were a fan of one of those teams, I’d fear Gerrit Cole just as much.

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