Analysis

Why a Four-Man Pirates Rotation Could Work

Why a Four-Man Pirates Rotation Could Work

The Pirates don't just have to worry about Cole's Super 2 status but also his innings count. (Photo Credit: David Hague)

The Pirates' rotation situation will probably work itself out. The discussion about Gerrit Cole potentially returning to Triple-A so the Pirates will have six starters available is just this week's version of Pittsburgh's least exciting game show: What Should The Pirates Do With Their Rotation?

In previous episodes, the correct answer was: Someone Gets Hurt. Wandy Rodriguez and Jeanmar Gomez leave a game after one inning or fewer. A.J. Burnett pulls up while running in the outfield. Jeff Karstens suffered a Karstens. Injuries happen to pitchers.

What we don't know exactly is why pitchers get injured so often or if the rate of injuries can be reduced. In 2002, Rany Jazayerli studied the differences between four-man and five-man rotations, which became popular in the 1970s. One of his conclusions: "pitching in a four-man rotation is less damaging than pitching...

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Analysis

James covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects. He is a Broadcast Journalism student at USC and has written for such outlets as NBCOlympics.com, Pittsburgh Magazine and the official websites of the Los Angeles Clippers and Pittsburgh Penguins. James previously covered the Pirates for Pittsburgh Sports Report. He also broadcasts play-by-play for the USC Trojans baseball team and was awarded the 2013 Chick Hearn Memorial Scholarship and Allan Malamud Scholarship. James dispenses puns at his Twitter account (@JamesSantelli) where he promises to write in first-person. Google

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