Pittsburgh Pirates: Final 2023 Opening Day Roster Projection
By Marty Leap
Starting rotation - Mitch Keller, Roansy Contreras, Rich Hill, Vince Velasquez, Johan Oviedo
After Keller gets the ball on Opening Day, Roansy Contreras will likely get the ball on Saturday in Cincinnati and Rich Hill on Sunday. Veteran free agent addition Vince Velasquez will follow in Boston, we then have a shakeup to what the original projected starting rotation was.
Following Monday's news that JT Brubaker will likely start the season on the injured list, Johan Oviedo is the beneficiary. After pitching extremely well last September and turning heads this spring while working on a new pitch, the 25-year-old may have made the team's Opening Day roster regardless. Now, he will be getting the ball every fifth day.
If Keller, Contreras, and Oviedo all take a step forward this season and Hill continues to pitch the way he has for most of his career then this rotation could be sneaky strong this season. What's most encouraging is that none of that is very far fetched.
With highly touted prospects such as Quinn Priester, Mike Burrows, and Luis Ortiz all slated to start the season in the rotation at Triple-A Indianapolis this is a group that could look very different come this summer. For now though, these will be the five to start the season.