Pittsburgh Pirates: Roster Moves that Need to be Made

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 29: Roansy Contreras #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates makes his Major League debut against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park on September 29, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 29: Roansy Contreras #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates makes his Major League debut against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park on September 29, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images) /
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ST LOUIS, MO – APRIL 09: Roansy Contreras #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on April 9, 2022 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
ST LOUIS, MO – APRIL 09: Roansy Contreras #59 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium on April 9, 2022 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) /

Promote Roansy Contreras

The Pirate starting rotation is in dire need of a boost. Entering play on Saturday their starters had a 5.41 ERA on the season which ranks 27th in baseball, their 4.47 FIP ranks 25th and their 134.2 innings pitched ranks dead last.

Right-handed pitcher Roansy Contreras is the top pitching prospect in the Pirate farm system. Contreras is MLB ready, at this point enough time should have passed with him in the minor leagues season for the Pittsburgh Pirates to accrue a 7th year of team control. It is time for Contreras to permanently join the team’s starting rotation.

At Triple-A this season Contreras has pitched 14.2 innings in 4 starts. He’s posted a 2.45 ERA and struck out 33.3% of batters faced. While his walk rate of 16.7% is high, it is not a concern. Contreras does not have a history of poor control and that number has been inflated some by a 3 walk performance on Friday night.

Contreras has also already found MBL success. Between last September and this April he’s pitched 10.2 MLB innings in 4 outings. In these 10.2 innings pitched Contreras has allowed just 1 home run, walked 4 batters and struck out 14 while posting a 2.53 ERA.

Contreras should anchor the Pirate starting rotation for a long time. It is time for that to begin. Making room for Contreras on the active roster would not be an issue, either. We’ve already discussed the need for Hembree to be designated for assignment, they could also option someone like Bryse Wilson to Triple-A to make room for Contreras.

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