The Pirates find themselves with a slight pitching dilemma. They have six starters Burnett, McDonald, Bedard, Karstens, Correia and Lincoln plus two who appear to be waiting in the wings in Owens and Locke. In the bullpen the Pirates have the newly demoted Lincoln, Hanrahan, Grilli, Cruz, Watson, Highes, Resop, Slaten, Leroux, Morris, McCutchen, Moskos, Meek and even a few others like Tim Wood vying for time. This doesn’t even take into account guys like Vandenhurk, Reyes and Wilson who all look like decent depth options right now.
The first steps in thinning some of the pitching depth comes tonight as two relievers will need to be removed from the 40 man roster to make room for Karstens and Sutton. Morris seems like the most logical choice and then the second choice would appear to be Resop or Slaten. However these moves will not hurt the depth long term so the Pirates have a slight surplus they can look to trade. Who exactly should be available well it would seem the most expendable starters would be Correia and Bedard and that every bullpen arm even Hanrahan should be available if it means upgrading the offense.
A trade is unlikely to occur until later in July so in the mean time what is the solution? Well there isn’t an easy one but this is what I would do.
Tonight I would send down Morris and Slaten.
When Leroux is ready to return I would DFA Resop.
I would trot Correia out for a couple more starts to see if he can establish any trade value
Lincoln would be inserted into a late inning role taking Cruz’s spot and would be allowed to throw multiple innings
Leroux would handle the long relief duties.
All of this gives us a pitching staff of:
#1 SP: McDonald
#2 SP: Burnett
#3 SP: Bedard
#4 SP: Karstens
#5 SP: Correia