Pittsburgh Pirates: These Three Pitchers Can Not Start 2024 in the Starting Rotation

Ben Cherington needs to be busy adding starting pitching help this offseason

Sep 22, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Andre Jackson (41) pitches
Sep 22, 2023; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Andre Jackson (41) pitches / Katie Stratman-USA TODAY Sports
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Thomas Hatch

Like Jackson, Thomas Hatch was a mid-season addition by the Pirates. Hatch was added by the Pirates when he was claimed off waivers on August 6th. This came after he was designated for assignment by the Toronto Blue Jays.

This is a bit of a different case than the other two pitchers discussed. Hatch is not a true starting pitcher. However, he does somewhat epitomize a big issue that plagued the Pirates far too often in the second half of 2023. That issue is the Pirates using an opener far too often, which is something they can not do with regularity in 2024, especially to start the season, if they want to take a step forward.

Hatch would make a pair of starts for the Pirates over the course of the final two months of the season. Both of these starts were Hatch working as an opener, he allowed 3 earned runs in 5.1 innings pitched in those two starts.

Overall, Hatch pitched 22.1 innings in 12 appearances with the Pirates. He posted a 4.03 ERA, 4.06 FIP, 7.4% walk rate, and a 17.0% strikeout rate. Like Jackson, Hatch could have some strong value pitching out of the bullpen in the majors. He possesses a slider that has plsu value and could really be a strong pitch in a full-time relief role. But using Hatch, or anywhere for that matter, as an opener can not be a discussion to start the 2024 season.

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