Clint Hurdle announced today that Wandy Rodriguez would be starting for the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday against the Milwaukee Brewers. Rodriguez is currently on the disabled list with a knee injury. He has made two rehab starts, and neither outing went well. Rodriguez gave up ten earned runs on 11 hits in 8.2 innings of work, with a 7:6 K/BB ratio and three home runs. All of that came at the Double-A level.
It’s not like Rodriguez had success in the majors prior to the injury. He had a 7.65 ERA in 20 innings of work, along with seven homers and a 16:6 K/BB ratio.
The Pirates don’t technically need a fifth starter until May 24th, although they would need a spot starter a week from today. If they did decide to go with a fifth starter earlier, then Rodriguez wouldn’t be the best choice. Brandon Cumpton has looked much better this year, both in the minors and in the majors. The Pirates might be seeing something here with Rodriguez that isn’t showing up in the numbers, but based on the numbers, I have a hard time believing everything will be fine with Rodriguez when he returns. At the least, they should have left him in the minors until he had one good rehab outing.
Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.
This does not seem like a good decision, especially given how he was hammered in the minors. Crumpton should be in this spot now – he has earned it. If Wandy gets shelled and costs the Pirates another game, you can chalk it up to Pirate brass stubbornness.
R Edwards, I don’t think that the management staff is being stubborn. They work for a boss, who as the joke says, “squeezes buffalo nickles until the buffalo poops”! Neal Huntington has to justify as to WHY he going to cost Mr Nutting some $3.75 million dollars (the Astros are paying the other half of the $7.5 million salary for Wandy). Is there any doubt that Wandy is WASHED up? He can’t throw hard enough to break a pane of glass. That means you can ignore his curve, slurves and change-up and just sit on his mediocre fastball. Hitters don’t have to “adjust” to anything. He might get through an inning, but eventually, they time him up and then light him up. But Pirates have a non-baseball man as a boss who is running the Pirates with the fiscal restaint of an Ebenezer Scrooge. What is so amazing is how successful that the management team has been the last four years given the financial restraint that they labor under. I mean, Giant’s first base/ outfielder Mike Morse looked pretty good against the Pirates last weekend…didn’t he? He could have really helped the Pirates too…if Neal was allowed to the spend the money to get him. All of the commentators on ESPN this week said that the Pirates stood pat in the off-season, and that, that lack of doing anything was an abrogation of trust to the long suffering fans who stood by the Pirates during their dry years. Especially after President Frank Coonley said that they would SPEND the money on payroll if the fans came out to support the team. I truly believe that there isn’t a more resourceful management team in all of sport than the Pirates brass given the limits that they work under. Nutting was right about one thing…he does have the BEST management team in all of sports.
I promise you it has nothing to do with Nutting sitting up in a dark office ringing his hands together while looking at the bottom line. The management obviously sees something we the fans don’t see, and that’s exactly as it should be. It’s a no brainier that it looks like Wandy shouldn’t start, but I’m not there watching his bullpens/location of his pitches his last minor league starts. We are missing so much information from the equation there really isn’t a reason to even speculate.
Monkshot, I respectfully DISAGREE with you. I don’t meant come accross like some conspiracy kook, but what else could it possibly be? Nothing ELSE makes sense. I admit, that I got the salary wrong. It’s not $7.5 million, it’s $13 million (with the Astros paying $5 million of that). I agree with the ESPN Baseball Tonight Commentators, about the Pirates standing PAT and not spending the money to IMPROVE the team. But I BELIEVE that was a BUSINESS decision not a Baseball decision. Every reasonable person SAW that they had OBVIOUS holes to fill. Tim wrote about this, EVERYBODY knew it…except the Pirates management team. Yeah right. Hunting and Co are not stupid. So now, we’re not supposed to believe our lying eyes. If you were talking about Volquez, then I might believe you. Volquez had STUFF. Wandy is WASHED UP. He has NO stuff. Stevie Wonder can see this… If it wasn’t for the $13 million , he’d be GONE already. Wandy is going to get SHELLED in Milwaukee. That’s not going to help a team that’s trying to dig out of a hole. But it will give justification for management to go to Nutting and say, “Mr Nutting, he’s too injured to pitch again”. They may even have injury insurance on him, like Detroit’s Max Scherzer has. Do you think that Wandy would get even ONE more START if he were with the Yankees? Oh, but they’re a large market team. They can AFFORD to cut A.J. Burnett and absorb half of a $16 million salary. Well, the Pirates CAN’T, and the LAST TIME that happened here…THAT GM got FIRED! Bob Nutting fired David Littlefied after they took a $10 million LOSS on pitcher Matt Morris. That GM didn’t get what Nutting wanted…this one DOES. They had better watch his money. Nutting was going to FIRE Huntington 2 years ago. The reason that he didn’t…because they MADE money. I rest my case.
We have tabata in center – this is outrageous – if we lose the game because of defense in outfield…
We have gaby Sanchez in right field. If marte is out for awhile and the don’t call up polanco they should be ashamed of themselves
On another sour note, it looks like glasnow is getting rocked in the first inning for 3 runs. Tim have you seen him live? Ay insight into what’s going on?
No worries – we will have no problem getting up 2 games to 0 in the card series – the $5 million dollar man – Ray Searages latest miracle will shut out the Cards easily
It appears they did go up 2 games to 0, but I guess MLB won’t count it as a ‘W” because ‘The Miracle’ didn’t toss a CG shutout. Still awaiting the outcome from MLB headquarters.
resolute to the fact that we aren’t going to win in milwaukee regardless- management said, “why not?”
Usually when there is a dramatic reaction from fans I stand back and pause thinking the reaction is overdone. This is a complete and utter joke. I can’t believe this decision is coming straight from Clint Hurdle, I just can’t. I can’t believe he has witnessed Wandy serve up meatball after 87mph meatball and then get his clock cleaned in AA and is thinking “let’s see what he can do against Gomez and Lucroy”
maybe this is a way to fast forward the opportunity to cut bait. maybe they felt they owed him one last chance, and it would be better to be now than a month from now……otherwise, this is ridiculous
Why? I appears we are trying to lose. First we bring up Irwin then this. If he can’t get AA hitters out he will not get the Brewers out. Additionally we will have to make an immediate move to help our overworked bullpen again. This franchise is better then this I hope.
BTW – former Bucs farmhand and Stanford RB, Tyler Gaffney just went to the Carolina Panthers in round 6 of the NFL draft
Seriously this is a fricking joke. Are you kidding me? They are going to start Wandy vs the Brewers in Miller Park right as we are finally starting to build a little momentum?
Agree completely. I will be surprised if he has even one good outing before either being waived or going back on the DL.