Pittsburgh Pirates: Potential 2021 All-Stars

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 27: Ke'Bryan Hayes #13 of the Pittsburgh Pirates bats during the game against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on September 27, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 27: Ke'Bryan Hayes #13 of the Pittsburgh Pirates bats during the game against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on September 27, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images) /
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CLEVELAND, OHIO – SEPTEMBER 26: Starting pitcher Joe Musgrove #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches during the first inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on September 26, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OHIO – SEPTEMBER 26: Starting pitcher Joe Musgrove #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches during the first inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on September 26, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

Starting Pitcher Joe Musgrove

Entering the 2020 season, we had starting pitcher Joe Musgrove pegged as a potential breakout candidate for the Pittsburgh Pirates. After a slow start to the season, and a stint on the injured list, Musgrove looked like just that down the stretch.

Musgrove finished the season with a 3.86 ERA, 3.42 FIP, 3.64 DRA, 9.6% walk rate, and a 33.1% strikeout rate in 8 starts. This gave Musgrove a new career-best ERA, FIP and strikeout rate. His home run rate was also strong at 1.13 HR/9.

His 33.1% strikeout rate ranked in the 90th percentile of baseball. He limited opposing batters to an average exite velocity of 85.1 MPH, which was in the 93rd percentile of baseball, and his 5.4% barrel rate was in the 70th percentile. So, opposing batters also struggled to square the ball up off of Musgrove.

Moving forward, the big question with Musgrove is where he will be in 2020. The Pittsburgh Pirates nearly traded him to the Toronto Blue Jays at this past trade deadline. He will enter the offseason as one of the team’s top pieces of trade bait.

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If Musgrove is with the Pirates in 2021, he will be one of the team’s top all-star candidates. However, it appears less and less likely that Musgrove will still be with the Pirates by the time the 2021 season rolls around.

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