Pittsburgh Pirates: Internal Starting Pitching Options for 2023

Oct 3, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Mitch Keller (23) delivers a pitch against the St. Louis Cardinals during the first inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Oct 3, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Mitch Keller (23) delivers a pitch against the St. Louis Cardinals during the first inning at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /
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NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 21: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Miguel Yajure #89 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on September 21, 2022 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Yankees defeated the Pirates 14-2. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 21: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Miguel Yajure #89 of the Pittsburgh Pirates in action against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on September 21, 2022 in the Bronx borough of New York City. The Yankees defeated the Pirates 14-2. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

Other Notables

There are two pitchers worth touching on. The first is Max Kranick. Kranick expects to return in mid-2023. Kranick looked on his way to securing a potential rotation spot in 2022. After adding a few ticks of velocity, Kranick seemed to be on the rise. After a few decent outings at Triple-A and five scoreless major league innings, Kranick, unfortunately, underwent Tommy John surgery.

This was a massive blow to the Pittsburgh Pirates rotation depth as he likely would have been getting starts at the tail-end of the season instead of Bryse Wilson and Tyler Beede. Although the timing of the surgery was unfortunate, Kranick could rejoin the pitching corps sometime in July or August. If he does return in the second half of the year, he could be eased back into action at Triple-A or thrown into the major league bullpen if the Bucs need more reinforcements by then.

The second pitcher is Miguel Yajure. One of the key pieces that headed to the Pittsburgh Pirates in the Jameson Taillon swap, Yajure, in my opinion, should have gotten the starts that both Wilson and Beede were getting late into the year.

Now granted, Yajure did not have a great season at Triple-A, owning a 6.09 ERA/4.97 FIP. His major league numbers weren’t great either, allowing 24 earned runs in 24.1 innings. But Yajure is only entering his age-25 campaign. Certainly, time for him to figure things out. Of the few positives, he gained 3 MPH of velo on his fastball.

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