Clint Hurdle has announced today that A.J. Burnett will be his Opening Day starter when the Pirates take on the Chicago Cubs on Monday, April 1st at PNC Park. He has also announced that Wandy Rodriguez will get the start in game two on Wednesday night. After that, the rest of the rotation has yet to be decided.
In his first season with the team last year, Burnett went 16-10, 3.51 in 31 starts, with 180 strikeouts in 202.1 innings. The wins total was the highest by a Pirates pitcher since the 1991 season. It will be the first Opening Day start for Burnett, who be pitching in his 15th season.
Rodriguez came over to the Pirates in late-July and went 5-4, 3.72 in 12 starts and one relief appearance....
John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.