Finally, Jameson Taillon day is upon us! The Pittsburgh Pirates highly-touted right-handed pitching prospect will make his Major League debut on Wednesday.
On Tuesday afternoon, the world of Pirates Twitter was set ablaze with excitement when the Pirates announced that Jameson Taillon would make his Major League debut on Wednesday against the New York Mets. This came as a bit of a surprise, because on his radio show on Sunday Neal Huntington said that Taillon would still make at least one more start at Triple-A. However, this is not happening.
Monday night’s rain out forcing a doubleheader to be played on Tuesday undoubtedly played a role in this. Due to the doubleheader, both Jon Niese and Juan Nicasio have to make starts on Tuesday. This would have left the Pirates without a starting pitching option for Saturday. However, they can now bump Francisco Liriano back to Thursday, Jeff Locke to Friday, and Gerrit Cole until Saturday.
Jameson Taillon has absolutely dominated Triple-A this year posting a 2.04 ERA and a 1.93 FIP in 61 2/3 innings pitched. In those 61 2/3 innings pitched Taillon averaged 8.90 K/9, 0.88 BB/9, and 0.24 HR/9. Furthermore, Taillon allowed just 44 hits in 61 2/3 innings pitched.
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Now, there are no guarantees that Taillon will remain in the rotation moving forward. However, I would be surprised if he does not. The Pittsburgh Pirates will have options for keeping Taillon in the rotation. In their next turn through the rotation, the Pirates could move Juan Nicasio to the bullpen. Also, placing Francisco Liriano on the, ummm, ‘disabled list,’ if his struggles continue in his start tomorrow is an option.
Also, I doubt the Pirates would call Jameson Taillon up if they did not intend on keeping him in the rotation moving forward. Otherwise, I believe we would see someone like Trevor Williams or Wilfredo Boscan make a spot start either tomorrow or Saturday. So barring Taillon struggling, I doubt he will be sent back to the Minor Leagues this year.
The only remaining issue is Super Two. Major League Baseball is probably 24-48 hours away from being 100 percent clear of the Super Two threshold. So, if need be, they can make a paper move of demoting Jameson Taillon to Triple-A after his final start before the All-Star Break and then reactivate him before his first start after the break.
This is something the Pittsburgh Pirates have done before. In 2013 Gerrit Cole made his debut on June 11th, and they were not sure of his Super Two status. So, Cole was ‘optioned’ to Triple-A, despite never leaving the Major League club, over the All-Star Break to be safe.
Adding to the excitement, is tomorrow’s pitching match up. Jameson Taillon will square off against Mets 24 year old fireballer Noah Syndergaard. Syndergaard, nicknamed Thor, is one of the best young right-handed pitchers in the Majors. This is an extremely exciting match up. Plus, I am a comic book geek who loves Thor and therefore am a huge Syndergaard fan.
Regardless if he’s here to stay or not, Jameson Taillon will make his Major League debut on Wednesday. It will be a pitching match up baseball fans dream of as Taillon squares off against Noah Syndergaard. So sit back and enjoy tomorrow, Pirate fans, because Jameson Taillon Day is upon us!