The way it looks right now, the need for the Pittsburgh Pirates at the trade deadline might be pitching. That need could be reduced if Jeff Locke continues pitching well (3.46 ERA / 3.54 xFIP after tonight, so no regression is expected this year), and/or if Vance Worley turns out to be back to his pre-2013 self. That said, the Pirates currently have a rotation made up of Gerrit Cole, Charlie Morton, Edinson Volquez, Locke, and Worley. That doesn't scream "playoff rotation", and things really won't change much when the struggling Francisco Liriano returns.
The Pirates will hopefully have a lot of questions answered by the end of the month. Are Locke and Worley the real deal? Will Cole and Liriano start pitching like top of the rotation guys? These questions could determine how big of a need starting pitching will be.
Looking at the long-term, the Pirates have a bigger need for starting pitching. Their 2015 rotation currently includes Cole and Morton, plus Locke and Worley if they ...
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.