Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 10/1/12
Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle plays it coy when asked if demoted starter James McDonald will have to win a spot in the rotation in spring training next year. "We'll have to wait and see," Hurdle said. "A lot of things can happen." However, it seems almost certain that McDonald will be one of the five pitchers in the rotation when next season begins. The only certainties at this point are left-hander Wandy Rodriguez and right-hander A.J. Burnett, and it's extremely doubtful the Pirates will spend the money necessary to buy at least two proven starters on the free-agent market. McDonald was one of the best pitchers in the National League in the first half of this season, going 9-3 with a 2.37 ERA in 17 starts before the All-Star break. He was dropped from the rotation following a loss against the Cubs at Chicago on Sept. 14 and was 3-5 with a 7.08 ERA in 12 second-half starts. McDonald has made just one relief appearance during his two-plus weeks in the bullpen and it was a disaster. He failed to retire any of the four batters he faced at Houston on Sept. 22 and was charged with three runs. The Pirates conducted their exit interviews with players last week. Hurdle, general manager Neal Huntington and pitching coach Ray Searage stressed the power of positive thinking to McDonald. "Once the season ends and closure of the season comes, there can actually be (the thought that), 'OK, now the clock can reset and get everything in place for '13,'" Hurdle said.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Jimmy Butler’s trainer rips Bulls on Twitter after trade

LaVar Ball booed as he left Barclays Center, throws BBB hat into stands

Markelle Fultz hilariously botches his Instagram ad

Luke Walton responds to LaVar Ball saying Lonzo will lead Lakers to playoffs

Report: 'Shocked' Jimmy Butler was in bed when trade went down

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Celtics refused to part with high draft picks in Jimmy Butler trade talks

Report: Bulls trade Jimmy Butler to Minnesota for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn, No. 7 pick

Joel Embiid shares new Sixers team nickname after Markelle Fultz pick

Report: Spurs, Cavs trade talks now include LaMarcus Aldridge

LaVar Ball says ‘Zeus and Jesus’ told him Lonzo would go to Lakers

Cavs are reportedly talking about a trade for Danny Green with Spurs

The 'NBA Draft going back to school?' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Gary Payton Award for best trash talk of the year

It’s quarterback contract silly season, starting with Derek Carr

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

2017 NBA Mock Draft

Box Score 6/22: Emotion-filled Knight for Pens fans, Preds fans... and Knicks fans

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The 'Golden Knights will begin with a Fleury of activity' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Ricky Davis Award for most irrationally confident shooter

It's time for Satchel Paige Day in Major League Baseball

Which vets the Vegas Golden Knights should build around

Box Score 6/21: Summer of NBA trades heats up

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'NBA Draft going back to school?' quiz

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Gary Payton Award for best trash talk of the year

It’s quarterback contract silly season, starting with Derek Carr

The 'Golden Knights will begin with a Fleury of activity' quiz

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

Feeding your roundball addiction through the summer months

2016-17 NBA Awards: The Ricky Davis Award for most irrationally confident shooter

It's time for Satchel Paige Day in MLB

Which vets the Vegas Golden Knights should build around

The Giants' failures for 2017 are complete, time to think of the future

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker