Pittsburgh Pirates: 3 More Starting Pitching Targets

(Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /
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Pittsburgh Pirates Target Ross
(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /

Tyson Ross

Tyson Ross has been a name that has been linked to the Pittsburgh Pirates for many years now, except this year.  While the San Diego Padres struggled during the Pirates’ playoff years, Ross stood out as the team’s ace.  He was young, had great upside, and was a controllable starter.  However, the Padres know that and were not going to just give him up.  Instead, Ross ran into a lot of health issues and between 2016 and 2017, only throwing 54.1 innings.  Of those innings, 49 of them came last season with the Texas Rangers.  His ERA was over 7.00.

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Looking to bounce back, Ross signed a 1-year deal at $1.75 million, a prove it deal.  Ross has outperformed this deal thus far and has given the Padres a decent trade chip.  This seemed especially so through the first two months of the season as he boasted a 3.31 ERA entering June.  However, Ross had two rough starts in July that made his ERA balloon up.  The first was against the Pittsburgh Pirates on July 1st when he gave up seven earned runs in five innings.  He followed that up with a two inning performance that saw him give up eight earned runs.  Other than those two starts, he has only given up more than three earned runs in a start two other times this season.

Currently, his ERA is sitting at 4.29, but take away those two tough starts at the beginning of the month and he has an ERA under 4.00.  He has produced a solid strikeout rate of 8.1 per nine innings pitched.  This has equated to 21.1 percent of his batters faced striking out while he has only walked 9.5 percent of batters.  This is a really positive ratio.  The best thing about Ross is he has proven to be healthy, already eclipsing 100 innings this year. He seems to have found his stuff again and is very cheap in terms of money.  The Pittsburgh Pirates have had a past of taking these reclamation type pitchers and making them great again.  Ross could be the next one.