Pittsburgh Pirates: Internal Starting Rotation Options for 2022

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Pittsburgh Pirates
PHILADELPHIA, PA – SEPTEMBER 24: Miguel Yajure #89 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the Philadelphia Phillies during a game at Citizens Bank Park on September 24, 2021 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /

Bryse Wilson and Miguel Yajure

The Pittsburgh Pirates acquired Bryse Wilson from the Atlanta Braves just before the 4 PM ET trade deadline on July 31st. Miguel Yajure was acquired from the New York Yankees in the Jameson Taillon trade last offseason. Wilson is a former top-100 prospects and Yajure is currently a top-100 prospect according to FanGraphs.

Both Wilson and Yajure pitched for the Pirates last season, and both are just 23-years-old. Outside of being given rest to manage his workload Wilson was a mainstay in the Pirate starting rotation after being acquired. As for Yajure, his MLB season was limited to 4 outings (3 starts) due to a forearm issue. Without this injury, odds are, Yajure would have permanently joined the Pirate starting rotation at some point in June or July.

Without a doubt Wilson and Yajure are two young arms the Pittsburgh Pirates will want to get an extended look at in 2022. Despite their poor overall numbers in 2021 (5.35 ERA, 5.49 FIP for Wilson, 8.40 ERA, 8.50 FIP for Yajure), they both flashed plus stuff at times.

Additionally, Yajure’s numbers were heavily skewed due to allowing 7 earned runs on a pair of home runs in 2 innings pitched in his final outing of the season. His ERA would have been cut in half without this outing, but that’s small sample size life. As for Wilson, he posted a 4.35 ERA and 4.33 FIP in his first 6 starts with the Pirate before a poor start on September 12th skewed his overall numbers. Again, small sample size life.

Barring injury or a disastrous Grapefruit League season the odds would appear to be high that both Wilson and Yajure will crack the Opening Day starting rotation. Both will likely be given a very long leash, even if they struggle, as the Pirates look to see if they have a future rotation building block in either Wilson or Yajure.