Pittsburgh Pirates: Dario Agrazal to Stay in the Rotation


The Pittsburgh Pirates have gotten a couple of pretty solid starts from a starting pitching prospect.  Apparently, he will continue to have the opportunity.

This past offseason, the Pittsburgh Pirates decided to designate right-handed pitching prospect Dario Agrazal for assignment.  The team picked up pitcher Aaron Slegers and had to make room for him on the 40-man roster.  What was odd was that Agrazal was considered one of the Pittsburgh Pirates top 30 prospects for the last few years.

Well, part of the issue was his health.  The now 24-year-old battled injuries during the 2018 campaign and only made 16 total starts.  So it appeared that maybe the Bucs were giving up on the Panamanian pitcher because they did not think he would come back healthy.

Agrazal has proven the team wrong.  No team put a waiver claim in on him when the Bucs cut him, and now has provided a much-needed boost to the starting rotation.  Agrazal has made two starts for the Pittsburgh Pirates recently and has performed well in both of them.

His first start came against the Miami Marlins on June 15th.  Clint Hurdle only let him go four innings, but he was effective in those innings. Agrazal gave up 2 earned runs and struck out 3 batters. Agrazal then held the Houston Astros to just 1 run in 6 innings of work in his second career start.

He followed that up Saturday night with a gem against the slugging Milwaukee Brewers.  This time he made it through 6 innings, giving up 2 runs in which both came on solo home runs.  He punched out only 1 hitter but continued to produce weak contact outs.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are rewarding Agrazal for his first 2 solid efforts. According to Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic, the Pittsburgh Pirates plan on Agrazal being apart of the rotation out of the All-Star Break.   Biertempfel tweeted that Agrazal will be slated in the fifth spot going forward:

This is obviously good news and well deserved.  The Bucs have had a lot of problems from their starting rotation. They have not been very consistent and have not eaten up enough innings of late.  While this has mainly been because of injuries (see Taillon, Williams, Archer, Lyles, and Brault), it will be good to get someone who can eat up innings effectively in Agrazal.

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Agrazal deserves this opportunity. He has grinded his way up through the minors and at one point looked as if he was going to be cast away from the organization.  Instead, he has outperformed top pitching prospect Mitch Keller at the big league level and now is going to get a chance to establish himself in the rotation.