First Pitch

First Pitch: What to do About Jonathan Sanchez in the Short-Term?

First Pitch: What to do About Jonathan Sanchez in the Short-Term?

Jonathan Sanchez has at least one more start before Francisco Liriano returns. Photo credit: David Hague

Francisco Liriano had a great start on Thursday. He threw five innings for Indianapolis, allowing one run on four hits, with no walks and eight strikeouts.

Jonathan Sanchez didn't have a good start on Friday. He was ejected from his start after allowing two homers in the first inning, then hitting Allen Craig with a pitch.

For Sanchez, that wasn't a fluke. On the season he has given up 16 earned runs in 11.1 innings. He's only made it through five innings once out of four starts, and it's leading to an overworked bullpen. The Pirates will eventually need to replace him, and Francisco Liriano would be an obvious choice after that last rehab start. The problem is that Liriano isn't ready.

Liriano threw 79 pitches in his start with Indianapolis. He's scheduled to go 90 pitches in his next start, then 100 in his final rehab start. Everything lines up for a May 10th return. H...

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Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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