The Pittsburgh Pirates acquired Drew Hutchison from the Toronto Blue Jays on August 1st, and he will make his Pirate debut this Saturday.
Today, Clint Hurdle announced some changes to the Pirates’ starting rotation. The first of which is that right-handed pitcher Drew Hutchison will start against the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday. Hutchison will start in place of Chad Kuhl.
Also, Gerrit Cole will return to the rotation on Monday in Philadelphia. To make room for Cole, Jameson Taillon‘s next start will be pushed back. Cole has been on the disabled list since August 29th will elbow inflammation.
It should come as no surprise that the Pirates are skipping Chad Kuhl and Jameson Taillon’s next starts. The Pirates are trying to keep the pitch volume as low as they can for both of these pitchers this season. So the expanded September roster gives them the opportunity to do so.
The Pirates want to be especially care of Taillon’s pitch volume this season. Taillon missed the previous two seasons due to a variety of injuries, and he has rebounded this season to pitch 149 2/3 brilliant innings between Triple-A and the Major Leagues. These 149 2/3 innings are by far a career high for Taillon.
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As for Drew Hutchison, I am excited to see what he can do on Saturday. He has spent the majority of this season at Triple-A. In 138 Triple-A innings this season Hutchison has a 3.59 ERA, a 3.79 FIP, and a 1.20 WHIP. Hutchison also averaged 7.5 H/9, 1.0 HR/9, 3.3 BB/9, and 9.0 K/9 at Triple-A this season.
Drew Hutchison is the typical Ray Searage success story. He is a pitcher that has good stuff, but has never been able to put it all together at the Major League level. In 406 1/3 career Major League innings Hutchison owns a 4.92 ERA, but the rest of his numbers are better than this. For his career he owns a 4.23 FIP, 4.01 xFIP, he averages 8.28 K/9, and he averages just 2.84 BB/9.
You will see Drew Hutchison throw a fastball, a curveball, and a change up. Hutchison’s fastball averages 92.1 miles per hour and features good movement. Hutchison does an excellent job of mixing up his pitches and not relying too much on one specific pitch.
Drew Hutchison’s best pitch is his slider. In his career opposing batters have hit just .232 off of his slider. This is accompanied by a .272 wOBA and a wRC+ of just 83. Hutchison’s slider has the potential to be a well above average pitch.
Personally, I am excited to see what Drew Hutchison can do on Saturday. I am hopeful this is not the only start he makes for the Pirates this month. Hutchison has always had good potential and stuff he just needs to put it all together, and we have seen countless pitchers do that as members of the Pittsburgh Pirates.