(Photo Credit: David Hague)

Brandon Cumpton Will Be Replacing Wandy Rodriguez

This is nothing but speculation at this point, but it appears that Brandon Cumpton will be replacing Wandy Rodriguez for Thursday’s start in Pittsburgh. Rodriguez was placed on the disabled list this week, leaving the Pirates without a starter for Thursday. By process of elimination, Cumpton currently looks like the only option.

Jeff Locke made his start on Monday. Casey Sadler started last night with Indianapolis. Stolmy Pimentel pitched 1.2 innings in relief in last night’s game against the Reds.

The most important piece of information is that Cumpton was originally tonight’s scheduled starter for Indianapolis, but has now been removed from the schedule. So it’s a pretty safe bet that he will be going to Pittsburgh to make the start on Thursday.

UPDATE: The Pirates have confirmed that Cumpton is the probable starter.

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Tim Williams

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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  • johndw28

    Good news as far as I’m concerned. He’s the most logical choice. Some steady , not giving up a run an inning pitching would be huge improvement from Wandy.

  • http://@gwbicster gwbicster

    Well there’s still Gomez, who hasn’t pitched in a few days…

  • wlenik

    Gomez should be DFA’d at this point he has been atrocious and prior to last season he had been his whole career. Bring Cumpton up to start but then leave Hughes up and send Gomez packing

  • Jeff Rhodes

    The worst implication of this decision is that the team might actually consider Wandy’s “injury” a temporary setback rather than a smokescreen to camouflage the fact that he’s washed up.

    This is just speculation on my part, but I don’t think the Pirates have ever thought of Cumpton as anything more than he was last year — a guy who can hold his own at AAA and give you an emergency start or two in the majors, but not a long-term candidate for a meaningful spot in the rotation.

    If the Pirates had decided to move on from Wandy — as they should, in my opinion — they’d either go with Locke, who at least had a good half season last year, or Pimentel, who arguably has enough up side to be a middle-of-the-rotation starter. The fact that they’re going with Cumpton signals to me, at least, that they haven’t closed the book on Wandy yet.

    • Y2JGQ2

      Well, we can all THINK what we want, but the organization and Hurdle have both said they are pretty optimistic about Cumpton’s future and in the rotation. If we don’t believe them, that’s our perrogative, but its all conjecture. Wandy…..is not sharp, i don’t see any reason to think he’s washed up unless the arm pain is back and isn’t going to go away. His curveball hanging has nothing to do with his age, his location is bad. Location has nothing to do with age as i’ve said before.

      • Y2JGQ2

        They would want Locke to show he’s sharp in AAA before bringing him back, as he still really had no spring training, we’ll see Locke after another 2-3 turns in the rotation if he is pitching well and Wandy isn’t ready to come back. If not, they will stick with Cumpton I believe

  • blainehwl

    Cumpton is just an easy guy to root for.

    He’s performed well enough at every level, including the majors. Though unspectacular, the guy’s consistent…the type of pitcher every rotation needs…someone you can give the ball to, know he’ll keep you in the game, and eat innings. He’s a Kevin Correia, but with talent.

    I wish him well in this run and hope to see him holding down the 3 or 4 slot full-time next season.

    • piraddict

      Great comment … I agree 100%! I love the intensity he projects while on the mound. He is a competitor. As he went to Georgia Tech we can safely assume he has a head on his shoulders too. This is not an oblique criticism of any other of the Pirates prospects who have better arms than Cumpton does (such as Taillon, Glasnow, Kingham, Pimental etc., I am not saying they don’t also possess mental abilities by pointing out that Cumpton does), but the ability to game plan, choose pitch sequences, and adjust on the fly to game situations are all mental aspects to pitching that MPH and “stuff” doesn’t capture. I think Cumpton has those, and I hope he pitches well!

    • stickyweb

      I think Karstens but healthy is a better comp than Correia but with talent. Yours was a better line though.

  • smurph

    Cumpton would be the #5, possibly even #4 SP on many ML teams right now. All you can expect out of a #5 is to go 5 or 6 innings, keep the game close, and hope you can score enough runs to win. Locke is not ready, as he missed spring training. Pimentel seems to have lost velocity for some reason, and Gomez has not looked sharp. Ray Searage needs to work some of his magic on this pitching staff.

  • bmcferren

    We’ve got 14 million dollars burning a hole in our pocket and we need an ace starter for the next two years

    • michaelbro8

      $14 mil? The Phil’s gave AJ $16 mil to be their #4 starter. Who on earth are the Bucs gonna get to be their ace for $14 mil ???

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